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(Not so) Grand Finalentertainment

The NFL Superbowl halftime spectacular has featured performances from The Who, Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, U2 and Bruce Springsteen. In contrast the AFL/VFL punters have been 'treated' to musical performances from the likes of Rolf Harris, Slim Dusty, Olivia Newton-John, Killing Heidi and a parade of Australian Idol contestants. And, all code rivalries aside, let's not pretend for a moment that the NRL has fared much better.

Last year the fans at the MCG got an earful of a JD Fortune fronted INXS and and Lionel Richie, while rugby followers suffered through a bizarre lip-synced performance by Jessica Mauboy. This weekend football fans get a double-dose of imported acts who you might know from their exploits in reality TV – Meatloaf (at the Cats and Magpies match) and Kelly Clarkson (at the Sea Eagles and Warriors game). Sure, they can both sing but we're hardly expecting memorable or exciting performances.

Oh well, at least it won't be the worst pre-match entertainment we've endured.

Angry Anderson

The granddaddy of hilariously odd Grand Final entertainment is obviously the Batmobile assisted performance of Bound For Glory by Angry Anderson at the 1991 VFL Grand Final.

Surely you've seen this masterpiece – you know how it goes: the music starts, Angry takes the mic and screams out “MELBOURNE! LETS SHOW THE WORLD WHAT WE'RE MADE OF… BOUND FOR GLORY!", then you start praying that no one overseas ever watches the footage.

Daryl Somers

Back in 1987, well before he botched an attempted comeback with a black face fiasco, Daryl Somers donned a fetching white suit and a dashing open-necked shirt to sing Waltzing Matilda at the 1987 VFL Grand Final. Who did he think he was? Kamahl?

Jessica Mauboy

Why oh why was Jessica Mauboy booked to perform Get em' Girls at last year’s NRL Grand Final? Then again nothing quite says “Hey you! Are you ready to watch large men attack and maul each other for premiership glory?” like the sight of a pop wannabe blatantly lip-syncing and struggling to remain upright as she waddles about in her ‘Get em' Girls’.

Jackie Love

Ever wondered what it would look like if Pauline Hanson had decided to sing as warm up entertainment at Grand Finals instead of entering politics? Neither have we, but this clip of Jackie Love performing a melody of footy classics (with a few rewrites) to a chorus of wolf whistles at the 1983 SANFL Grand Final does give you a glimpse into that strange alternative reality. (In fact Jackie Love is nothing like Hanson and can still be hired to perform at your next function, apparently she’s “an accomplished linguist [who] manages to incorporate into her act, at least one song in the native tongue of whichever country where she is visiting.” So basically nothing like Hanson.)

The cast of Neighbours

The cast of Neighbours including Kylie Minogue, Jason Donovan and Guy Pierce and a series of incrediable mulletty 80s hair-styles were entrusted with the hounor of performing the national anthem at the 1986 Grand Final rugby league Grand Final between the Eels and the Bulldogs.

Jersey Boys

Jersey Boys is a perfectly enjoyable musical; how could you argue with the music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons? However the scrotum tugging high notes delivered when the cast of the musical performed the national anthem at the 2009 AFL Grand Final were misjudged at best.

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dbag said on the 30th Sep, 2011

embarrassing as all fark


Koalaslament said on the 30th Sep, 2011

don't forget billy idol's amazing performance at the 2002 nrl grand final, when he came out in a hovercraft, jumped out ready to belt out some tunes to the bogan masses and then....power failure.


MorningAfterboy said on the 30th Sep, 2011

Where's Lionel Richie at theAFL grand final?


therat said on the 30th Sep, 2011

Not going to lie, Lionel Richie was boss. Also Angry Anderson & the Batmobile is not in the least bit embarrassing, that is theatrical gold.


Audiofile said on the 30th Sep, 2011

i love this article. brilliant. billy idol should have had a dishonorable mention.

personally i re kon that shin obi song is not too bad. too much pro tools but still good.

funny as shit


Audiofile said on the 30th Sep, 2011

it's meatloaf in afl this year..,hahahaha aha

new album out 2morrow funny that


Audiofile said on the 30th Sep, 2011

meatloaf we are gluttons


DinkiDIDude said on the 30th Sep, 2011

Jessica Maulboy before the Grandfinal last year was f*****g terrible, I swear to god that about 2/3rds of the stadium got up and hit the bar/refreshment stands half way through her first song, only my mighty Dragons claiming 2010 in a blaze of glory, erased any longterm psychosis stemming from having to sit through 20 minutes of that pure audio torture.

Dont even get me started on the stupidity of having Pete Murray 'amp us up' for State Of Origin this year..........


greendanceypants said on the 30th Sep, 2011

vuvuzela at 32seconds in the bardot clip.


LiveForever94 said on the 30th Sep, 2011

powderfinger were great though!

hedonism gibbon

hedonism gibbon said on the 1st Oct, 2011

living end were pretty good at the famous 40-0 Gf in 2008

they did white noise + a song i've never heard since that was great


sarcasm_mister said on the 2nd Oct, 2011

after rumours that he might not perform because of the weather Meat Loaf still came out hit 7 out 405 notes at the MCG yesterday.


grattan said on the 2nd Oct, 2011

Meatloaf was staggeringly awful - Leaping Larry sums it up perfectly in The Age:

At times he seemed to sing in keys previously unknown to mankind, and deep in the fifth set of Bat Out of Hell he sounded not unlike some larger form of sea mammal in considerable pain and/or distress.
Later, a vision identified as Vanessa Amorosi commenced the Australian national anthem amidst an explosion of violently coloured orange hair, looking not unlike she'd just fallen out of a convenient nightclub. This may have frightened someone in the Ten control booth, as they never showed her again. She finished on either a flourish or a scream that sounded like Meat Loaf had just stood on her foot.


Audiofile said on the 2nd Oct, 2011

@ 6.43 someone behind meatloaf is cheering wildly after he hits a note.

oh vanessa


Lucan said on the 2nd Oct, 2011

Meatloaf was truly terrible. I hope he does a better job for the punters going to his actual tour shows or he's going to have some very angry fans. Very OUT for the piped crowd during the "singalong" for Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth, p!ssweak stuff.

I'm honestly think Lionel Ritchie did a good job for the Grand Final replay last year. Wiped the floor with INXS who played the previous week.


pirateninjasaur said on the 3rd Oct, 2011

Not a grand final, but does anyone remember at the bledisloe cup a few years back where that NZ guy sang the australian anthem, got the first 2 lines right, forgot the 3rd, sand the 4th wrong then gave up?


sarcasm_mister said on the 23rd Oct, 2011

at least he isn't oblivious to it all.....

Did ageing Meat Loaf fall flat in Perth?

Meat Loafs got a good sense of humour, you've got to give him that. Halfway through his concert he folded his arms in mock disappointment and complained about how poorly the crowd was singing. Talk about took the words right out of my mouth, which, coincidentally, was the song the 64-year-old was singing at that point.

Sadly, his latest Australian tour has followed in the wake of his infamous performance at the AFL Grand Final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground three weeks ago. In the lead up to Saturday’s concert Meat Loaf was interviewed by PerthNow. He went on the offensive and gave all the reasons why things didn’t go his way at the footy.

Sitting in the middle of nib Stadium, the Perth concert sounded suspiciously similar to that MCG debacle. Without the excuses it was possibly even more disappointing. Walking away it was difficult to come to any conclusion other than he is but a shadow of the artist he once was.

From the very first song, a medley of Hot Patootie-Bless My Soul and Time Warp from The Rocky Horror Picture Show it was clear all was not right. The eight-piece band was powering on, co-vocalist Patti Russo was in sparkling form but the veteran was simply struggling to keep up. What was coming across mostly was a weak and monotonous mumble that was barely heard. It was undoubtedly sincere and the huge screens on either side of the stage made it clear just how much the singer had invested in the night. Unfortunately that undeniable passion didn’t make it any easier to listen to.

Just prior to that song Meat Loaf said rather cryptically, “ this is my last show in Australia, this is my last show in Perth,” before thanking his fans for supporting him through the best of times and the worst of times. He then added, “If I haven’t lived up to your dreams baby, I’ve come out here every night and given you every fucking thing I’ve got.” The question that lingered after last night’s performance was “was that enough?”


Lucan said on the 7th Jun, 2013

I was all excited to see The Basics are playing the NSC on Friday 27th Sept & Saturday 28th Sept.

A friend much wiser than I has pointed out this could be a good indicator that Gotye will be AFL Grand Final Day entertainment this year.


ROYALwithCHEESE said on the 7th Jun, 2013

Was listening to triple M last year 'the footy show' and they were bitching about

-paul kelly (he should be playing in small bars, how is this guy great?)
-Tim Rogers (who is Tim Rogers?)