SAN FRANCISCO (CAP) - Music legends Huey Lewis And The News and Toto are both expressing extreme displeasure at having been passed over for consideration to perform at this year's Super Bowl halftime show, the honor for which has been given to pop icon Madonna. The two groups released a joint statement admonishing the NFL for "constantly playing it safe" when choosing its halftime acts.
"I've got 40 years of rockin' under my belt, which granted I've had to loosen a few notches, but I still know how to bring it," said Huey Lewis. "They want edgy? I even have a song about wanting a new drug - you know, one that does what it should."
"Yeah, and we do drugs," added Toto frontman Steve Lukather. "I mean, used to do drugs. We don't anymore. At least, not on stage."
Despite the heartfelt plea to reconsider, NFL officials are standing behind their choice of Madonna, who falls in line with their unwritten edict of not selecting anyone under the age of 50 to perform at the Super Bowl since Janet Jackson's infamous wardrobe malfunction in 2005.
"I know we had the Black Eyed Peas last year, but in our defense, we thought they were a Negro barbershop quartet from the '60s," said NFL spokesperson Dana Macks. "And Slash certainly looks like he's over 50."
Macks noted that although Madonna has been known for her shocking public displays in the past, the Super Bowl selection committee felt that her advanced age in conjunction with increased gravitational pull would negate any concerns over loss of clothing. "Plus, she'll be wearing a muumuu, and you really have to work at getting those things off," he said.
The NFL has indicated on numerous occasions that one of the main factors in selecting a halftime performer is staying power, and that when Toto broke up in 2008 after 31 years, they lost that status. Even though they got back together in 2010, they still need to "prove they're in it for the long haul."
"It's no different with today's artists," said Macks. "If Rihanna's still around in 30 years, we promise we'll give her the spotlight she deserves."
Although Huey Lewis and all the members of The News fit the age criteria, music pundits generally agree that the Super Bowl would not be good fit for the prodigious rockers. "The '80s were barely able to contain those guys," wrote music blogger Matt Jordan. "I don't think today's kids would know what to do with them.
"Hell, we're still recovering from the Yes-Asia tour of 2009," Jordan added. "Plus Pat Benatar teaming up with The Bangles a year later. Is that blood dripping from my ears? Why yes, I believe that's blood."
For his part, Huey Lewis told CAP News he'll never stop hoping for that elusive Super Bowl invite, "at least until I'm in my 60's." Then he paused, did some mental calculations, and added, "Okay, mid-60's. I forgot to carry the one."
- CAP News Staff