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Beyoncé drops new music, Taylor Swift takes over the big game: How 2 music powerhouses stole the Super Bowl’s thunder

In Entertainment
February 14, 2024

The Super Bowl might showcase the athletic prowess of two professional football teams, but this year two women in attendance ruled the night: Taylor Swift and Beyoncé.

With 123.7 million viewers, the big game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Franciso 49ers was the most-watched U.S. telecast since the Apollo 11 moon landing in 1969. A number of factors might have contributed to this: a lack of new fall TV shows thanks to 2023’s dual Hollywood strikes, a compelling halftime show appearance from Usher with a slew of special guests and new viewer data.

But there’s no denying Swift’s impact. When she attended a Chiefs game to support her boyfriend Travis Kelce, viewership was up 9% to 15% according to the New York Times. The 2023 Super Bowl recorded an all-time-high viewership, but those numbers grew 7% in 2024. Swift’s fans, known as Swifties, threw viewing parties in her honor and even learned the rules of the game to watch along.

Swift didn’t even need to perform to make an impact. Frequent footage of her in the stands — chatting with her famous friends, chugging her drink and nervously picking her nails — went viral online. Her post-game embrace with Kelce (and their after-party antics) drove social media conversation the day after as well.

Just one week earlier, Swift made history at the Grammys when she won Album of the Year and announced that her next album, The Tortured Poets Department, would be out April 19. From there, she jetted to and from Tokyo to perform sold-out concerts for her “Eras Tour” before returning to the U.S. for Kelce’s game.

The pop star’s ability to grasp public attention and use it to generate income made her a billionaire in 2023, according to Bloomberg. She was Spotify’s most-streamed artist and her tour grossed more than any other has before. Together with one other artist, Swift generated $10 billion for the U.S. economy last year — and that artist was also seated at the Super Bowl.

Beyoncé’s attendance at the Super Bowl wasn’t announced beforehand, but she still managed to break the internet. There are only a few clips of the singer at the big game, but she appeared in an ad for Verizon, in which she attempts to “break Verizon” by creating so much buzz that its servers couldn’t handle it. As a last-ditch attempt to do so, she said in the ad, “Drop the new music.” Then she did in real life.

Beyoncé posted on Instagram that her new album, Renaissance Act II, would be released March 29. She also dropped two country-tinged singles, “Texas Hold-Em” and “16 Carriages,” getting her audience worked up about a new era.

“Beyoncé watching the Super Bowl like she didn’t just break the internet,” one X user wrote.

The Kansas City Chiefs might have taken home a trophy at the end of the night, but the internet will long remember the impact Swift and Beyoncé had on Super Bowl LVIII. In the words of one of Beyoncé’s most famous songs, who run the world? Girls.

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