The 51-year-old singer also compares being invited to perform at the Super Bowl to a major Hollywood award.
Mary J. Blige is more than ready to "turn that Dre track way up high" when the Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show kicks off next month. Yes, that's a hint at what she's cooking up as far as her performance goes, but the 51-year-old singer's even more ecstatic about the "major" vibes she and her legendary counterparts will send when they soon take the stage.
In an interview for Elle's February 2022 issue, the nine-time GRAMMY-winning singer opened up about the significance of joining the likes of Dr. Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar on Feb. 13 at SoFi Stadium for the highly anticipated halftime show. The Good Morning Gorgeous singer is elated about exposing the genre's versatility on the world stage.
"Hip-hop is East Coast. Hip-hop is West Coast. Hip-hop is Europe," the singer tells the fashion magazine for its State of Black Beauty feature. "This is why it’s going to be so major, because this is what the Super Bowl is showing to people: It’s not just one thing. [Hip-hop] is everywhere."
The five hitmakers -- who have a combined 43 GRAMMYs and 21 Billboard No. 1 albums -- hail from different parts of the country where hip-hop took on its own form -- Dre and Kendrick from Compton; Snoop from Long Beach, Eminem from Detroit and Mary J. from the Bronx. It'll be everyone's first performance at the Super Bowl, except for Blige, who took part in the 2001 show alongside *NSYNC, Aerosmith, Britney Spears and Nelly.
"It's like getting an Oscar nomination," Blige tells Elle about what it's like to be asked to perform at the Super Bowl. For the record, she has two Oscar nominations to her name. That being said, Blige had only a small role in her first Super Bowl performance. But 2022 will prove different.
"This time I'm going to be front and center -- Mary J. Blige, in her glory and greatness and swagger," said Blige, whose15th studio album Good Morning Gorgeous drops Feb. 11.
But with five iconic performers set to take the stage, Blige's cognizant of the fact she'll have to narrow her performance to one song. She told Elle she's leaning toward her 2001 hit, "Family Affair," from her fifth studio album, No More Drama. Why? For starters, it's one of Dre's favorite tracks. He produced it. And she also points to how the hip-hop world is a "Family Affair."
"We are the culture; [hip-hop artists] give people a way to speak," Blige says. "We give people a way to walk. We give people a way to talk. We give people a way to think. That’s what hip-hop and hip-hop soul have done for our culture since [the beginning]."