The “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” singer, 37, hinted at a tribute to the Minneapolis native at a listening party for his latest album, Man of the Woods, at Prince’s Paisley Park compound in Chanhassen, Minnesota, on Thursday, February 1. Timberlake told the audience that he is a huge Prince fan and never thought he’d be introducing his album at Prince’s house, before adding it was the best birthday gift he’s ever been given.
The event was held in a space that Prince built behind his living quarters, where the “Purple Rain” singer used to perform concerts for local residents. The party also honored the beloved performer, as a black scarf hung over a microphone as his band, The Revolution, played at midnight after Timberlake’s party ended.
TMZ shared a video of the “SexyBack” singer practicing for the halftime show, which revealed that he is planning to perform “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” “My Love” and “Cry Me a River.” He also pre-taped his performance, which includes fireworks, in case anything goes wrong and he can’t perform live. There is speculation that Chris Stapleton, who duets with Timberlake on his new song “Say Anything” will also make an appearance during the performance.
After news broke about the Prince tribute, the late singer’s brother Omarr Baker took to Twitter to deny that a hologram would be used during the halftime show. He posted a No Entry sign along with the hashtag #PrinceHologram. When asked by a fan, “Does this mean you didn’t authorize it or that it’s not happening?” Baker replied, “Both.”
— PRNFamily® (@PRNFamily) February 3, 2018
Prince’s former fiancee and longtime collaborator Sheila E. also took to Twitter to slam the rumors, tweeting, “Prince told me don’t ever let anyone do a hologram of me. Not cool if this happens!”
Prince told me don’t ever let anyone do a hologram of me. Not cool if this happens! https://t.co/khtCjXr2mY
— SheilaEdrummer (@SheilaEdrummer) February 3, 2018
Timberlake’s good friend Jimmy Fallon, who will be hosting a live episode of The Tonight Show after the game, hinted at a special guest appearance, telling The Star Tribune on Friday, February 2, “We want to nod to Minnesota. I’ve been thinking about Bob Dylan and Prince. There will be Easter eggs.” He added that his pal “Justin is pumped” and “may have a special guest with him too.”
Timberlake seems to be having a ball in Minnesota ahead of his highly anticipated performance at the Super Bowl. On Friday, he stopped by a Target in St. Paul where he told fans via Instagram that he had left behind five signed copies of an exclusive vinyl version of Man of the Woods. He later shared a video of himself in front of the U.S. Bank Stadium looking excited and saying, “It’s going down!”