T-t-talking ’bout a
The New Orleans Saints took home the
Super Bowl trophy, but it was The Who that
scored during the halftime show, performing
far above my expectations for a 12-minute
medley of ﬁve of the band’s biggest hits.
Pregame performer Queen Latifah also
was a valuable player, but Carrie Under-
wood’s rendition of the N ational Anthem de-
served a penalty ﬂag.
Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend didn’t
exactly turn back the'clock, but at 65 and 64,
respectively, they gave a performance that
would make them take back the admonition
from their 1965 hit “My. Generation” —
“Hope I die before I get old.”
There’s no question Daltrey and Townsh-
end are old. It was truly cringe-worthy when
Townshend’s famous “windmill” guitar
strokes caused his shirt to lift and expose his
gut. Thank goodness this was as close as they
came to a wardrobe malfunction like Janet
Jackson’s in 2004.
But Townshend and Daltrey were good,
solid rockers, regardless of age. So surprising-
ly good was Daltrey’s voice that I spent the
ﬁrst half of the performance looking for clues
that he was lip-synching . Hey, after Whitney
Houston lipped “The Star Spangled Banner”
in 1991, I vowed “I won’t get fooled again.”
(They did sing that one).
As for Latifah, she did a surprisingly re-
strained, warm version of “God Bless Ameri
a”before the game.
aBut Carrie Underwood gave an off-key, off-
pace, screamed-and-yelled version of “The
Star Spangled Banner.” That made it the sec-
ond high-proﬁle bad performance in a row
for a top-selling, blond country star, after Tay-
lor Swift’s much-maligned duet with Stevie
Nicks on the Grammy Awards.
Underwood — who opens her tour March
11 at Reading’s Sovereign Center — has only
herself to blame for this performance.
As The Who might say, it left me “C-C-
— John Maser