ORIGINAL STORY: The NRL has hit fans with a bit of a curveball when it comes to this season’s Grand Final entertainment, announcing that the one and only Macklemore will perform at the big pre-game show.
Despite rumours that the footy code had been shooting for rock legends Pearl Jam to play at this year’s decider, they’ve instead gone with the ‘Thrift Shop’ dude in a move that’s already triggered a scrum of opinions, with Australia’s foremost opinion factory, Alan Jones, leading the backlash:
Some American rapper called "Macklemore" will perform at the NRL Grand Final. How much is he being paid? Is this a wise allocation of funds?
— Alan Jones (@AlanJones) August 31, 2017
NRL fans: "Play some Macklemore? How about play some Mackle Less". https://t.co/u4TpnexsXM
— Cosmo (@dukesilver_) August 31, 2017
However, other fans have pointed out the apt timing of the US rapper — famous for his marriage equality anthem ‘Same Love’ — performing on Australian turf at such a crucial time for the same-sex marriage cause:
Macklemore singing Same Love at the Grand Final during the plebiscite, could just be history's greatest troll move…
— Sam Lyons (@SamTaweets) August 31, 2017
It's 2017. It's time to move on. Frank Sinatra isn't available guys. Macklemore is a great get for the NRL.
— Martin Gabor (@MartinJGabor) August 31, 2017
Mack will perform a bunch of his chart-scorchers in front of 84,000 fans at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium on 1st October during the League’s epic pre-game festivities. And if you’re confused by his appointment, then you apparently only have your fellow fans to blame.
The NRL has revealed the singer was chosen after a special focus group voted on who they most wanted to get the crowd fired up prior to the first whistle.
“The fact that we were able to bring an act who was specifically requested by a fan focus group is something really special,” says NRL Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Abdo, adding that Mack’s gig would be accompanied by a mind-blowing light and pyro show.
“Our Grand Final Entertainment will once again ensure that the biggest match of the season is a spectacular event not to be missed.”
And fans of the Mack Attack who want to see him live will have no choice but to head to the game, because it’s set to be his only Aussie performance during his visit down under.
“I couldn’t be more honoured and excited to perform at the NRL Grand Final,” Macklemore says. “It’ll be one of the largest crowds I’ve performed for thus far and my only show in Australia this year.
“I’m humbled to have the opportunity to reach such a large, enthusiastic NRL audience.”
Let the games begin.