North Haven resident Jimmy Buffett will perform our national anthem, “The Star Bangled Banner,” at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans this Sunday, January 20. Buffett is opening for the New Orleans Saints as they take on the Los Angeles Rams in the 2019 National Football Conference Championship game. The winner will go on to play the American Football Conference Champion—either the Kansas City Chiefs or the New England Patriots—in Super Bowl LIII on Sunday, February 3.
Believe it or not, there’s more to this than meets the eye (or ear). Not only did Buffett sing the National Anthem for the Saints back in 2006, he’s among their oldest fans. He was at the Saints’ first game in 1967, and he’s had a lifelong friendship with head coach Sean Payton. The two have attended the Super Bowl together and even performed onstage in the Big Easy in 2012 (Payton played the bongos). Buffett has attended the team’s practices over the years and will now welcome them back to their home turf as they lock horns with the Rams for the NFC Championship.
Buffett won’t be the only big name at the Superdome on January 20. As per tradition, a free home-game concert will be held at Champions Square, with a performance by Cheap Trick, and the Ying Yang Twins and local rapper Choppa, real name Darwin Turner, are playing the halftime show.
The East Ender was there when the Saints won their last NFC Championship in 2009, and gave them the coveted George Halas trophy before they went on to win Super Bowl XLIII. A decade later, he may once again see the Saints move up the bracket and earn their ticket to the big game.