Justin Timberlake’s Super Bowl LII halftime show performance may not have featured any surprise guests – aside from a ginormous image of Prince – but he arrived at Jimmy Fallon’s live post-game broadcast of The Tonight Show from Minneapolis’ Orpheum Theatre with Chris Stapleton in tow. Together, the pop superstar and country kingpin teamed up for what is now their third live collaboration, duetting on “Say Something” off Timberlake’s new Man of the Woods album.
Opening with the two singers both strumming acoustic guitars and repeating the prayer-like song’s “I don’t want to get caught up in the middle of it” mantra, the track built toward a display of air-tight harmonies, with Timberlake and his background vocalists echoing Stapleton’s “there is melody and harmony for you and me tonight.” In line with Timberlake’s new rustic aesthetic, this live take on “Say Something” felt more of a loose campfire jam than a note-for-note re-creation of the album’s swirling track.
Timberlake and Stapleton first performed together during the 2015 CMA Awards in Nashville and reunited at last year’s Pilgrimage Festival in Franklin, Tennessee. Stapleton co-wrote two songs on Man of the Woods and appears in the video for “Say Something.” Timberlake also sat down with Fallon to recap his Super Bowl performance, describing his nod to Prince with “I Would Die 4 U” as “the ultimate homage to what I consider the G.O.A.T. of musicians.”