Music Guests Announced for SNL Anniversary Show

Courtesy of NBC
Courtesy of NBC

NBC just announced the musical guests for Saturday Night Live’s 40th Anniversary Show. Kanye West, Justin Timberlake, Taylor Swift, Paul Simon, and Paul McCartney are some of the artists who will perform at the anniversary celebration. The celebration will also feature some of Saturday Night Live’s most iconic past and present cast members including Eddie Murphy, Steve Martin, Chris Rock, Tina Fey, Will Ferrell, Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, Amy Poehler, and Bill Murray.  

The most surprising celebrity guest on SNL 40 is comedian Eddie Murphy. He hasn’t appeared on the show since his departure in 1984. Murphy spoke to News One about the SNL 40 special event. “It’s just timing. It just never worked out where the timing was right for me to do it,” the comedian told News One. He added, “They’re having a 40th anniversary. I’m going to that, and that will be the first time I’ve been back since I left.” A few years ago Murphy spoke to Rolling Stone magazine about his animosity towards SNL. “They were shitty to me on Saturday Night Live a couple of times after I’d left the show,” the comedian told Rolling Stone. Murphy expressed his anger towards a sketch that SNL alumni David Spade performed a few years ago. During his sketch, Spade held up a picture of Eddie Murphy and said, “look children, a falling star.” Murphy took it as a personal attack, not only by Spade, but he also felt betrayed by the SNL producers who approved the sketch. In the end, the comedian said he is over all the drama and he does not hate David Spade. 

Saturday Night Live first premiered on the air in 1975. One of SNL’s biggest draws is its musical guests for the show. Although the show’s standard format is to feature a celebrity host and a musical guest, sometimes the musical guests take on the role as the host, too. Some of the recording artists who were featured on Saturday Night Live as a musical guest and host, include Drake, Britney Spears, Taylor Swift, Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, Bruno Mars, and Blake Shelton. Timberlake has appeared on SNL four times as a host, and on three of those occasions, he was also the musical guest. The three-hour special, SNL 40, is scheduled to air on February 15th at 8PM (Eastern standard time) on NBC. The red carpet special will air one-hour before the event.