DETROIT (Billboard) - Super Bowl XLIII week will mark a “meeting of important chapters” for Nils Lofgren, the guitarist in Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, which will perform during halftime at the Tampa Bay, Florida, game.
“From me being a teen football player to joining the E Street Band 25 years ago to (NBC football commentator) John Madden to the (Arizona) Cardinals, it’s just a beautiful coming together of a lot of elements in my history that are really important to me,” the 5-foot-3 Lofgren told Billboard.com.
The Super Bowl halftime performance also marks a kind of unveiling of Lofgren’s new “bionic” hips, the result of replacement surgery in October. That was necessitated by the wear and tear of athletics and an “aggressive” performing style that has included onstage backflips off a mini-trampoline.
“I’m coming along,” Lofgren reported. “I’ve lost the cane. I’ve lost the limp. I’m doing rehab. I’m just trying to be a good rehab patient. I’ve never had to be this cautious, 24-7 with my body, so it’s a new adventure for me, But I’ve been assured that if I do the rehab right, in 10 to 12 months my body’ll grow in, around and through these (hips) like roots and vines and lock ‘em in as good as they’re gonna get.”
Despite the ongoing healing, Lofgren said he’s in fine shape to play the 12 minutes at the Super Bowl and should even be in shape to go on tour with Springsteen and company to support the new “Working on a Dream” album after its January 27 release.
The guitarist, meanwhile, is setting up a new album release of his own -- “Tough Stuff: The Best of the All-Madden Team Band,” which consists of music he performed to accompany the announcements of Madden’s all-star teams for 10 years.
“They used to send me raw footage of these great, dirty, nasty, funky, cool players, and I got to plug in my guitar and just jam away on these roaring rock instrumentals,” recalled Lofgren.
A 13-year Arizona resident who will be rooting for the Cardinals in the big game, Lofgren said that Madden’s involvement in this year’s Super Bowl as a broadcast commentator is “an added bonus. And having a fabulous home town team, the Cardinals, there, makes the Super Bowl even more special.”