Super Bowl 50 is upon us. On Sunday much of the country will be watching the clash between the two top seeded teams, the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, taking place inside Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.The two teams come from opposite sides of the NFL franchise: The Broncos are looking to build on an already impressive legacy while the Panthers, an expansion team, seek to secure its first Super Bowl title. Quarterback legend Peyton Manning will face off against Cam Newton, a superstar in the making who represents the future of the position. It’s the funky, indie cool of the Mile High City versus the Carolinas’ Southern-fried vibe.
For music nerds, the biggest deal is the halftime show: Brit rockers Coldplay will anchor the annual extravaganza, with scheduled cameos from Super Bowl alumni Beyoncé and Bruno Mars. But there is more for music fans to be excited about than just the halftime entertainment. After all, exploring the musical profile unique to each team reveals no shortage of cool jams.
Newton and the Panthers are as renowned for their flamboyant touchdown dances as they are their imposing 15-1 record. Newton, born and raised in Atlanta, the 26-year-old quarterback set social media on fire this season after incorporating dabbing into his end zone celebration. But Newton isn’t the only ace dancer in Charlotte.
Pro Bowl fullback Mike Tolbert (a.k.a. Dancing Bear) enjoys busting “The Carlton” (You know, from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Tolbert also is the locker room deejay, a demanding assignment for a team whose taste covers a wide range of genres.
Frequently posting their favorite artists and songs to Instagram, the Panthers listen to everything from Rihanna and Adele to Explosions in the Sky and Kings of Leon. As for stadium jams, in addition to obvious picks like “Sweet Caroline” and “I’d Rather Be in Carolina,” the team has consistently blasted “Boom Boom” from Big Head Todd & The Monsters — an ironic choice considering the jam-rock act hails from Denver.
The Broncos, meanwhile, host one of the biggest party atmospheres of any NFL team.
On any given Sunday DJ Triple T and DJ Bedz get Sports Authority Field at Mile High rocking with a raucous mix of classic rock, hip-hop and alt rock. The Beastie Boys’ “Fight For Your Right” is one of the pair’s go-to jams, with Van Halen’s “Panama” and House of Pain’s “Jump Around” right up there.
Unlike Newton, Manning isn’t terribly vocal about his favorite music, though it’s no secret that he’s a serious Kenny Chesney fan. The Broncos’ biggest music lover has to be Pro Bowl linebacker Von Miller, who counts Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight” and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” among his personal favorites. He often requests the latter to be played during games. Other team requests include Young Thug’s “Big Racks” (cornerback Chris Harris) and Lil Bibby and Future’s “Aww Man” (wide receiver Demaryius Thomas).