Billy Idol talks upcoming pre-Super Bowl show, recent Hoover Dam performance, working on a new album

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Billy Idol normally takes advantage of riding his motorcycle on the open road knowing there’s hardly any traffic because millions are usually glued to watching the Super Bowl.

But this year, Idol’s bike won’t be leaving his garage on game day. Instead, the legendary British rocker will be strolling on stage to headline a pre-game concert in Las Vegas ahead of the big game on Feb. 11 just outside Allegiant Stadium, where the NFL’s two best teams face off.

Idol, 68, is expected to perform some of his biggest hits including “Dancing with Myself” “Mony Mony” and “Rebel Yell” during a 35-minute set on two different stages at On Location's Club 67 and Touchdown Club in front of nearly 9,000 anticipated guests. It’s the second time the singer has taken part in a pre-Super Bowl show after he rocked out with Miley Cyrus three years ago outside Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

In a recent interview, Idol exclusively chatted with The Associated Press about his Super Bowl halftime aspirations, the inspiration behind his Hoover Dam show, if he would ever consider doing Broadway and looking to soon release his first studio album in a decade.

Remarks have been edited for clarity and brevity.


AP: What will be your mentality heading into your show hours before the Super Bowl?

IDOL: It’s about adding excitement to the event. You’re pumping people up. That’s a fun feeling. You can tell the people are excited, what’s going to happen and you’re entertaining them in those moments before it really happens.

AP: Would you ever want to perform during Super Bowl halftime?

IDOL: That would be incredible. But I don’t know. It would be fantastic, but I cannot imagine me being asked to do it. It would be great. I’d love to do it. It would be amazing if it involved some other artists or a combination of people. That would be great. It would be one of the craziest things in the world to play. Everybody in the country watches it. Playing the pregame for me is good. Pumping people up before it and getting them ready is kind of a fun thought.

AP: You celebrated the 40th anniversary of your album “Rebel Yell” and had a five-night residency in Las Vegas last year. How does it feel to have your music still resonating today?

IDOL: When we were starting out, I couldn’t have imagined the effect of (our) music. We were living one day at a time. The songs were for that time period. They were just for that moment. You weren’t thinking about any long-term effects. You’re just thinking right now. But the songs have legs. It’s like “Wow, people have really embraced this crazy idea I had years ago.” They’re still enjoying it, and I am too. Who would have thought that 40 years later? I’m still pinching myself.

AP: You released a couple EPs and recently rereleased “Rebel Yell.” Will you drop any new music soon?

IDOL: We have a new album coming out in October this year. We’re still carrying on and enlarging what my music is about. I enjoy doing it. Me and (guitarist) Steve (Stevens) are still finding ways to excite ourselves. We’re not out there going through the motions. We’re actually out there taking prisoners. That’s how we feel.

AP: How far along are you in the process?

IDOL: We’ve got most of it recorded with just some finishing touches. We’re doing a cover. We’re thinking about videos and all the promotional things that go along with it. There’s a lot of stuff we’re going to be thinking about this year. But. .... playing at the Super Bowl, that’s pretty fantastic.

AP: You have a built-in fanbase. With your new album, have you taken a different approach musically with your upcoming project compared to past works?

IDOL: Not really. We’re bouncing off our last album “Kings & Queens of the Underground.” We did that in England and had strings on it. With this, we tried to make a lot more of an up-tempo album. There are nine songs and six of them are up-tempo. Three of them are kind of slower. It’s more of a youthful sounding record. I think it’ll allow our audience to have a lot of fun.

AP: What inspired you to perform at Hoover Dam?

IDOL: It was something like I would see in movies when I was a child. There was an Alfred Hitchcock movie (“Saboteur”) that referenced Hoover Dam. There was another film “711 Ocean Drive” that ended on the Hoover Dam. You know, it had a shootout. For someone like me, growing up in England, I saw this iconic place in movies then I got to play in front of it. Hoover Dam was right behind me with my logo on it, which was insane.

AP: Are there any other locations like Hoover Dam where you would like to perform?

IDOL: Mount Rushmore. I couldn’t have ever imagined Hoover Dam, so now the world is my oyster. There’s the incredible Crazy Horse statue that’s carved out in the Black Hills. We can play anywhere. Nothing can stop us.

AP: Have you ever thought about doing Broadway?

IDOL: Of course, we have. We haven’t quite worked out our direction. We’ve had several different ideas we’ve sort of fielded. Nothing has come to fruition yet. As you can see, they’re doing Prince’s “Purple Rain” on Broadway, so it’s not out of the question that we would do one. It’s just been sort of trying to work out how to do it. That’s what’s fun about having a catalog. It does resonate with a lot of people and there are possibilities like that in the future.