Usher Recalls Phone Call with JAY-Z About 2024 Super Bowl Halftime Show: ‘It’s Magic Time’

The R&B star announced the big performance on Sunday, and revealed he got an exciting call from JAY-Z when he found out the news

Usher is opening up about an exciting phone call he received from JAY-Z.

Shortly after announcing that he will be headlining the Apple Music Super Bowl LVIII Halftime Show in February, the R&B icon, 44, spoke to Apple Music 1 about his major performance for the first time.

Usher Recalls Phone Call with JAY-Z About 2024 Super Bowl Halftime Show: 'It's Magic Time'

Usher speaks with Zane Lowe.

ZANE LOWE/APPLE MUSIC 1

During his conversation with Zane Lowe, Usher explained just how it felt to hear from his “big homie” and Roc Nation founder JAY-Z about landing the coveted halftime gig.

“But when I got this call… he said, ‘It’s time, it’s magic time. You know, it’s time for you to have that moment.’ I’m like, ‘What are you talking about?'” Usher recalled of his conversation with JAY-Z. “He’s like, ‘The Super Bowl.’ I’m like, ‘Oh, you ready? Absolutely.'”

“And it was like this was destined to happen,” Usher later added. “I think that everything that led up to that moment, going to Las Vegas for my residency for the last two years. The legacy, obviously, that is the music, the celebration of entertainment in that place. It’s the City of Lights. You know, it’s always been a place where entertainers go and find love and passion, connection to their fans. So for the Super Bowl to have made its way to Las Vegas while we were in Vegas, having such an amazing two years…”

Usher — who previously performed with the Black Eyed Peas during their 2011 headlining performance at the Super Bowl — will now take his talents to Allegiant Stadium in Paradise, Nevada, for his first time since Roc Nation’s ongoing partnership with the NFL.

Usher’s 2024 performance marks Roc Nation’s fifth Super Bowl halftime show under the NFL partnership, following 2020’s show with Jennifer Lopez and Shakira, 2021’s performance by The Weeknd, 2022’s ensemble set from Dr. Dre and friends, and Rihanna’s 2023 gig.

“Being able to see performances from artists like Michael [Jackson], you know, eventually Prince, and then even more modern-day artists… I was like, ‘Man, at some point I need to get a call with what’s going on now.’ But I’m really happy that I’m joining that short list of legacy artists from my genre who deserve this moment,” Usher told Lowe.

“And I’m really happy that JAY-Z and also Roc Nation really put thought into making certain that they could bring to the world this kind of experience. It is definitely going to be a moment to remember.”

Usher’s Super Bowl coup comes amid a few other big milestones: his Usher: My Way Las Vegas residency, the 20th anniversary of his legendary diamond-certified 2004 LP Confessions, and the upcoming release of his next album, Coming Home.

Usher Recalls Phone Call with JAY-Z About 2024 Super Bowl Halftime Show: 'It's Magic Time'

Usher speaks with Zane Lowe.

ZANE LOWE/APPLE MUSIC 1

As Usher explained to Lowe, the album — due out on Feb. 11 — is “a love letter once again to the legacy of my career.”

“I’m back home with my team. You know, even when you see the artwork, you will understand it. When you see the peach, you get it. You understand where I’m from and what we’re doing,” Usher said.

“And also to what this means, the subtlety of that. But more than anything, it’s a celebration of music. Coming home in many other ways as you get more acclimated. When I put out more records and also put more visuals, actually begin to really understand it. But I think that it is something to be celebrated.”

Usher will also celebrate his new era, and the many eras before it, with a few special guests at the big game in February, but he’s not giving way those secrets just yet.

“I’ve collaborated with a lot of incredible artists throughout the years. If anything, I’d like to socially engage the world. I’d like to hear who you think would be a great guest to complement this,” he joked to Lowe. “So, by the way, there’ll be many more Sundays to talk about this leading up to the Grand Sunday of all.”
Super Bowl LVIII will air live on CBS on Feb. 11, 2024.

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