The Rolling Stones considered the decision to censor two of their songs during the Super Bowl halftime show on Sunday “ridiculous” and unnecessary, a representative for the band said.
Stones spokesperson Fran Curtis took issue with a comment by a National Football League spokesperson yesterday (Feb. 6) that the band was not only aware of the plan to lower the volume on Mick Jagger’s microphone for two lines but also “fine with it.”
Producers of the top rated U.S. television event of the year have been cautious about causing offense ever since Janet Jackson bared her breast during her act in 2004 in a now famous “wardrobe malfunction.”
During the Rolling Stones’ performance, in the song “Start Me Up,” the line “you make a dead man come” was cut short and a barnyard reference to “cocks” in the new song “Rough Justice” also disappeared.
“The Rolling Stones were aware of our plan which was to simply lower the volume on his microphone at those two appropriate moments,” NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy said yesterday. “We had agreed to that plan earlier in the week. The Stones were aware of it and they were fine with it.”
But Curtis said the members of the band were far from happy with the decision to cut the lines on the broadcast, which was carried by ABC. “The Rolling Stones thought the censorship of their songs by the NFL/ABC was absolutely ridiculous and completely unnecessary,” Curtis said, adding that they were aware of the plan before the show.
Asked whether the Stones had felt strongly enough to take any action, such as pulling out of the show, she said: “The band did the songs they were supposed to do and they sang all the words.” “There were many many conversations back and forth and the band clearly was not happy about it.”
ABC Sports has said any alteration of the lyrics was done by the NFL and its production company.
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