In a new in-depth interview with Rolling Stone, Bruno Mars revealed some creative differences he had with the NFL before his first Super Bowl halftime show in 2014. “They wanted to show a shot of the audience wearing these light-up bracelets,” he said. “I told them, ‘If you take that camera off me, you’re doing yourself a disservice.’ And what happened? They spent all this money on these things, and it didn’t work.”
He continued, “God bless the Super Bowl. They hooked me up, they took a chance on me. But I had to keep reminding them why they took a chance on me. You put that camera on my band and me, and I got you.”
He also spoke about joining last year’s Super Bowl, when he appeared with Coldplay and Beyoncé. After headlining the gig two years prior, Mars originally declined Chris Martin’s invitation because he “felt like [he’d] just done it.” But according to Mars, Martin said he wanted “to be responsible for giving that gift [of Beyoncé and Mars performing ‘Uptown Funk’ together] to the world.” When Mars told Martin to run the idea by Beyoncé, the two shot a video and texted it to her.
When it came time to work with Beyoncé, Mars revealed she was all about the Cheetos. “Me and Beyoncé were both working on our diets, stressing out,” Mars said when explaining the tense hours and days before the performance. “Then the day before, we’re watching playback backstage, and she’s eating a bag of Cheetos. I’m like, ‘That’s what you’re doing?’ … She’s like, ‘There’s nothing more we can do these last two days. It’s gonna be what it’s gonna be. So I’m gonna enjoy this bag of Cheetos.'”
Elsewhere in the interview, Mars said a song on his new album, 24K Magic, features the “sonic genius” Skrillex. He also dished about his recording sessions for Adele’s 25 and how she was “so gangster” while working on her song “All I Ask.” They disagreed about one line, “Take me by the hand while we do what lovers do.” When he pushed against it, he says she told him, “She was like, ‘Nope. That’s what it has to be.’ And she was right. It’s this grand word that makes the song bigger because no one says it. Because nobody talks like that, it pops out. It’s not ‘what boyfriends-and-girlfriends do’ – it’s this over-the-top ‘lovers.’ Sometimes I play it on the piano, and I look forward to singing that part. It’s fucking perfect.” The lesson: “Don’t try to be cool. Let it be what it wants to be.”