The Who have agreed to play during halftime at Super Bowl XLIV, a source close to the performance confirms to Rolling Stone. “It’s 100 percent the Who,” the source says. “They signed a long time ago.” (Update: Sources later clarified that while the official contract is still unsigned, a deal is expected to be finalized shortly.) The official announcement from the band and the NFL is expected on Thanksgiving Day, according to another source familiar with the deal. The game, which will take place February 7th in Miami, will be broadcast on CBS.
The Who will become the latest classic-rock act to play football’s big event, following Bruce Springsteen, the Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Prince and Tom Petty. As Rolling Stone noted earlier today, the band has a solid relationship with CBS: three of the network’s CSI series use Who tracks — “Who Are You,” “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and “Baba O’ Riley” — as their theme songs.
Earlier this year, Rolling Stone‘s readers voted the Who their Number One pick for potential Super Bowl Halftime Performers, and RS predicted the band would score the big gig. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band delivered a “12-minute party” at Super Bowl XLIII, performing “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out,” “Born to Run,” “Working on a Dream” and “Glory Days” before a crowd of millions.