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Music History Events: Sports

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February 5, 2017 Lady Gaga opens the Super Bowl halftime show with a verse from "God Bless America," followed by the song Woody Guthrie wrote as a parody, "This Land Is Your Land."More

October 30, 2016 With the Cubs in the World Series for the first time since 1945 (they haven't won since 1908), longtime fan Eddie Vedder leads the crowd in "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" during the seventh-inning stretch.More

February 7, 2016 Coldplay and football (the American kind) come together when the band headlines the halftime show of Super Bowl 50 between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers. It is an odd pairing, but after a set that includes "Viva La Vida" and "Paradise," Bruno Mars appears, followed by halftime show savior Beyoncé, who blasts out her new song, "Formation."

May 27, 2014 50 Cent throws out the first pitch at the Mets game, missing the catcher by about 20 feet. Topps later produces a baseball card commemorating the moment.More

April 20, 2013 Five days after three people were killed in bombings at the Boston Marathon, Neil Diamond makes a surprise appearance at Fenway Park, where he performs "Sweet Caroline" at the Red Sox game against the Kansas City Royals.

February 3, 2013 Beyoncé invigorates the 2013 Super Bowl halftime show with a performance that reunites Destiny's Child.More

February 5, 2012 The Super Bowl XLVI halftime show becomes the most-watched television event in history, at 118 million views. Performing artists include Madonna, LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, and Cee Lo Green.

July 29, 2011 Chuck Berry throws out the first pitch at the St. Louis Cardinals baseball game on the same day his statue is unveiled on Delmar Boulevard in the city.

February 4, 2007 Prince wows at the Super Bowl halftime show, closing with an otherworldly rendition of "Purple Rain" in the rain.More

June 26, 2005 Pink proposes to her boyfriend, motocross rider Carey Hart, by holding up a sign that says "Will You Marry Me?" while he is racing in Mammoth, California. On the next lap, she adds, "I'm Serious." He pulls out of the race to say yes; the couple get married the following year.

February 1, 2004 Justin Timberlake punctuates the Super Bowl halftime show by tearing away part of Janet Jackson's costume, revealing her right breast to a massive audience that quickly reaches for their TiVos for a replay. Both artists blame it on a "wardrobe malfunction," but while Jackson gets blacklisted, Timberlake is welcomed back by the music industry and the NFL after a series of apologies.More

October 1, 2000 Australian rock band Midnight Oil play their hit "Beds Are Burning" at the closing ceremony of the Summer Olympics in Sydney. Their black outfits are emblazoned with the word "sorry," a symbolic olive branch towards the Aboriginals who were forced from their lands by a government that refuses to apologize.More

March 19, 2000 The New York Mets release Garth Brooks, who is participating in spring training with the team. The country star gets the boot after going 0-17 at the plate.

April 25, 1999 It's Joe DiMaggio Day at Yankee Stadium, where Paul Simon performs "Mrs. Robinson," which contains the classic line, "Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?"

April 9, 1996 The New York Yankees grounds crew dances to "Y.M.C.A." as they drag the field in the fifth inning of their home opener, eliciting roars of approval from the crowd. The routine, with improved choreography, becomes a regular feature at Yankee Stadium.

September 6, 1995 Joan Jett sings the National Anthem before the Baltimore Orioles game against the California Angels. The game marks Orioles shortstop Cal Ripken's 2,131st consecutive game, breaking the record held by Lou Gehrig. Jett, a huge Orioles fan and friend of Ripken, watches the rest of the game alongside a host of baseball legends, including Willie Mays and Joe DiMaggio.

July 25, 1995 ESPN releases Jock Jams, Volume 1, an album of high-energy, stadium-friendly hits like "Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)" by C+C Music Factory and "Get Ready For This" by 2 Unlimited. It sells over 2 million copies and leads to four more compilations.More

June 17, 1994 With the United States hosting the World Cup, the opening ceremonies are held at Soldier Field in Chicago. In one of the production numbers, Diana Ross sings "I'm Coming Out" while she takes a penalty kick. She misses, but the goal splits open anyway and she runs through to complete the bit.More

January 30, 1994 Natalie Cole sings the US national anthem at Superbowl XXVIII in Atlanta, Georgia. Halftime is country, with Clint Black, The Judds and Travis Tritt among the performers.

January 31, 1993 With just 45 minutes to kickoff, Garth Brooks threatens to cancel his national anthem performance at Super Bowl XXVII when the NFL reneges on its promise to debut the video for his controversial protest anthem "We Shall Be Free."More

January 27, 1991 With American troops fighting in the Gulf War, Whitney Houston does a stirring version of the National Anthem at the Super Bowl. Her performance is lip-synched, but so well received that it is released as a single, charting at #20. This version is re-released in 2001 following the September 11 attacks.

January 22, 1984 What goes better with football than Barry Manilow? The "Mandy" singer performs the national anthem at Superbowl XVIII in Tampa, Florida. Disney handles the halftime show.

April 17, 1983 Joe Strummer of The Clash runs the London Marathon, finishing with a time of 4 hours 13 minutes. He claims that his training included 10 pints of beer the night before.

February 13, 1983 Marvin Gaye performs a very memorable national anthem at the NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles, doing a sultry version with a beat.More

May 4, 1982 Under the leadership of chairman Elton John, who has invested heavily in the team, the Watford Football Club is promoted to the First Division of English football with a win over Wrexham. The team was in the lowly Fourth Division when Elton took over as chairman in 1976.

January 24, 1982 The Super Bowl is held in Pontiac, Michigan, so the halftime show is a salute to Motown. Diana Ross sings the national anthem.

July 12, 1979 It's "Disco Demolition Night" at Comiskey Park, where the White Sox and Tigers are playing a doubleheader. The plan is to blow up a bunch of disco albums between games, but it goes horribly wrong when fans become unruly and rush the field, forcing the White Sox to forfeit the second game.More

May 7, 1978 Goaded by an item in the magazine saying they are "more interested in finding a softball team they can beat," the Eagles take on Rolling Stone in a game the rock band wins 15-8 (Don Henley is the winning pitcher). In the crowd cheering on the Eagles are Joni Mitchell and Chevy Chase.

October 30, 1974 At the "Rumble In The Jungle" in Zaire, Africa, boxer Muhammad Ali knocks out George Foreman (unbeaten in 40 fights) in the eighth round in a stunning victory that earns him the heavyweight title he was stripped of for refusing induction into the US Army in 1967. The fight is recounted in the 1975 hit "Black Superman" by Johnny Wakelin & the Kinshasa Band.More

October 7, 1968 Long before the US National Anthem becomes a performance piece, the Puerto Rican singer Jose Feliciano makes waves when he does a slow, jazzy version of the song before Game 5 of the World Series between the Tigers and Cardinals. Among those joining the uproar are Tigers starting pitcher Mickey Lolich, who complains that the overly long rendition screwed up his pregame routine.More

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