Roles were reversed today with the Black Eyed Peas showing some love for AFL CEO Gill McLachlan presenting him with a Gil.I.Am jersey at the MCG.
The American band will– led by Will.i.am– will entertain the crowd ahead of the Saturday’s Grand Final between Collingwood and West Coast Eagles.
The US hip hop group will be replicating their biggest hits Where is the Love, My Humps, I Gotta Feeling and Boom Boom Pow with replacement vocalist Jessica Reynoso this weekend.
“We are honoured to be heading to Melbourne to perform at the AFL Grand Final day,” the Black Eyed Peas said.
“Jimmy Barnes needs no introduction — it’s a thrill to have him play with one of the world’s best band in the Black Eyed Peas,” McLachlan said.
The combination of an Aussie legend and a huge global act is the best way to set of an extraordinary grand final, we are thrilled.”
“I might have to get 10 microphones up on stage — and I might even turn some of them on,” he said.
Barnes says he is a Port Adelaide fan after growing up in Adelaide.
“I played football at high school but obviously I wasn’t tall enough to do it as a career so I took up singing.”
He says it’s too hard to pick a winner in the big game.
“West Coast has been so consistently good but Collingwood is charging through at the end and a Victorian team at the MCG has to have some sort of advantage.”
The Black Eyed Peas’ biggest star Will.i.am will arrive in Australia tomorrow but three band members were at the MCG today to present AFL boss Gillon McLachlan with a special ’Gill.i.am’ jumper.
Rapper Taboo said the band was excited to be back in Australia for the first time in eight years.
“We’ve had the honour of doing the World Cup in South Africa, we did the NFL Super Bowl a couple of years ago in 2011, now being here it’s an amazing thing.”
“I’m very glad to be back becaue the last time we were here was the Big Day Out and I know that doesn’t happen any more so I’m just very blessed and we look forward to the festivities.”
He admitted the band weren’t too familiar with AFL but would be doing a crash course before tomorrow’s game.
“We just love sport.”
Fellow rapper apl.de.ap was pleased to learn there is an American taking part in the game in the form of Magpie Mason Cox.
“In any sporting event I always go for the underdog, so I’m glad there’s an American team there.
“I’ll give out a bit of a secret but I Got A Feeling is always a good sporting song so that’s one of the songs we’ll be playing to get everyone up and pumped.”