CFL Grey Cup halftime show entertainer Keith Urban speaks to the media in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Grey Cup halftime performer Keith Urban curious about Canadian Football League

Previous Grey Cup halftime performers include Alessia Cara, Shania Twain, OneRepublic, Fall Out Boy

Country music star Keith Urban is about to experience the Canadian Football League for the first time.

The four-time Grammy winner is the halftime performer for Sunday’s 107th Grey Cup in Calgary between the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

“Having never seen a CFL game before, I’m looking forward to seeing one,” Urban said Saturday at McMahon Stadium. “What a crash course right? To come and see the Grey Cup.”

Urban has sold more than 20 million albums, six of which have reached No. 1.

Previous Grey Cup halftime performers include Alessia Cara, Shania Twain, OneRepublic, Fall Out Boy and Imagine Dragons.

Urban has performed at a Nashville Predators games and at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field for the NHL Stadium Series game between the Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins in February.

Born in New Zealand and raised in Australia, he’s familiar with NFL football having attended a few Tennessee Titans games

The 52-year-old singer-songwriter says it’s a different vibe performing a few quick songs at a game where he’s not primarily who people have come to see.

“I never know what to expect in a situation like this,” Urban said. “It’s a bit like going to a festival where you don’t know how many people there know who you are, what you do, have never seen you before.

“But it’s maybe a little harder because it’s a sporting event. I always come out with the attitude that everyone is standing there doing this,” he said, folding his arms in front of him. “‘What do you do? What’s your business?’

“I want to keep everybody warm and up and motivated with hopefully songs most everyone knows.

“I’ve got 12 minutes to do it in.”

Urban is familiar with Calgary having performed in the city earlier in his career, including the 2014 Calgary Stampede.

“Calgary’s got such a huge country fan base,” Urban said. ”My music certainly transcends a lot of that as well, goes outside of it a bit.

“It feels like a second home, it really does Canada in general, because I started touring here so early in my career.

“I could tell from when we started playing little clubs that what I was doing, everybody got it. I felt like I was back in Australia.”

Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

ALBERNI GOLF: Men’s club hosts four-man waltz

Dave Mann, Steve Pointon, Bill Barrett and Phil Anker took the top spot in the event

Missing ‘Where is my Dad?’ sign returned in Port Alberni

Good Samaritan finds Lisa Petterson’s stolen sign, returns it to Merville woman

BIZ BEAT: Port Alberni businesses continue to give back to the community

See what businesses are starting up, moving and renovating

Daytripping: From Port Alberni to Ucluelet, visit the ‘wild west’

Whether you’re looking to stroll, sip, sup or stay, Ucluelet has something for you

Port Alberni Food Hub opens to seafood processors

Four ‘anchor’ tenants welcomed

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

COVID-19 gives B.C. First Nation rare chance to examine tourism’s impact on grizzly bears

With 40 infrared cameras deployed in Kitasoo-Xai’Xais territory, research will help develop tourism plan with least impact on bears

NDP wants Lower Mainland MLA removed from BC Liberal caucus for alleged homophobia

BC Liberal leader, some MLAs apologize for Christian magazine ads but Laurie Throness doubles down

B.C. health officials pleased with likely extension of Canada-U.S. border closure

Health Minister Adrian Dix says the situation is ‘very serious in the United States’

Children suffer swollen eyes, burns while playing at Lower Mainland spray park

Mission RCMP are investigating incident that injured several children

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Most Read