We’ve already taken a look back at what was popular at the Box Office back in 2005 when the New England Patriots first played the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl, and if you thought that was some weird shit, wait ‘til you get a load of what was happening in music around the same time.
First of all, 3 Doors Down was on the cover of Billboard, which may give an immediate sense of just how backwards things had gotten five years into the new millennia. “Hit Band Shifts Into Overdrive To Deliver 3rd Album” screamed the headline. That record was Seventeen Days, and while it topped the charts, cooler heads prevailed, and it ended up being one of the worst reviewed efforts in the Mississippi band’s catalog, which is a bit of a misnomer since — if we’re being honest — none of them have any redeeming qualities. Although that one song, “So I Need You,” was the bomb… but I was also super stoned when making that judgement.
Speaking of charts, The Game topped them the week of the big, errr… “game,” with his debut The Documentary, which had ridiculous buzz about it on the merits of producers like Dr, Dre, Timbaland and Scott Storch all having their spoons in the soup. Hip-hop was dominating at that time to begin with, as Lil Jon, Ludacris, Eminem, Jay-Z, Snoop Dogg and Nelly were in the top 25. Even Tupac Shakur, nine years after he allegedly died, made an appearance at No. 20 with Loyal to the Game, his fourth posthumous effort. At that point, people realized he was just trolling all of us and living as a rickshaw business owner in the Bahamas.
Alt-rock had its own thing going on, and Green Day was still riding high on American Idiot, a well-intended jab at the second term United States president George W. Bush released the prior September. The rest of the world had finally caught onto the brilliance of The Killers, whose debut Hot Fuss had come out the previous June, with the as usual forward-thinking UK music fans devouring it like it was one of their own. Gwen Stefani left those No Doubt clowns in the dust and embarked on a solo career in Love. Angel, Music Baby. A month after the Super Bowl, her single “Hollaback Girl” would threaten to make her a mononymous entity along with the likes of Madonna, Prince, and Plato.
Country pop was in full bloom, as Rascal Flatts, Gretchen Wilson, Big & Rich, and Tim McGraw would not stop infiltrating the consciousness of the American psyche. Best-of collections from Guns N’ Roses, Creed, and Korn began the head scratching though, and there was a sense of, “Wait, what the fuck is going on here?”
Jet was still a thing. Keane was something to talk about. Chingy had a hit. And remember the popularity of Crossfade? We neither. They ended up doing a song called “Dear Cocaine,” so there’s that. Ashlee Simpson jumped hard on the coattails of her sister Jessica’s success, but derailed during that disastrous Saturday Night Live appearance.
Full disclosure, I’m an Eagles fan. That’s probably why I didn’t bring up Aerosmith’s covers album Honkin’ On Bobo from that era. Coming straight from the belly of the beast, where Rocky Balboa defeating Apollo Creed is the primary championship celebrated by most residents, has been bittersweet. I moved to Boston the year the Patriots defeated the Eagles in the Super Bowl. Why? Maybe it’s that masochistic side of me.
Since then, Boston has had seven championships across its big four franchises.
By comparison, Philadelphia has had one.
What a fucking nightmare.
Despite all that, I love this town. A decade in after thinking I’d be here for two years, I’m sold on the sweetness.
Oh… and remember that Bruins v. Flyers playoff series in 2010? Don’t count Philly out. Ever.
As for the the mid-early aughts? Here’s a reminder playlist featuring 39 songs we were listening to during Super Bowl XXXIX:
Featured Green Day photo courtesy of Reprise Records.