DAILY DIRT: Carrie Underwood’s singing of the Sunday Night Football theme is well worth her time (and yours)

Screenshot 2023-09-12 at 7.49.32 AM

Carrie Underwood at 40. Better with age.

Daily Dirt for Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023
Carrie Underwood and Sunday Night Football. Together for a decade.

I find it hard to believe Carrie Underwood is now 40 years old. It just seems like the other day Simon Cowell was telling her she was a little “pitchy” on “American Idol” …. Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 722 of The Daily Dirt.

1. I was amazed when I recently read that Carrie Underwood is paid $1 million PER WEEK for her singing of the Sunday Night Football theme song on NBC. 

First of all, I have absolutely adored Carrie Underwood ever since her days on the original “American Idol” TV program. Secondly, I say that just so you know there is no jealousy tied to my ensuing comments. That said, have you ever stopped to consider:

  • Underwood, who has been opening the Sunday Night Football since 2013, receives $1 million each time that song is played prior to the Sunday night NFL game.
  • There are 17 weeks in the Sunday night TV schedule. (There is never a Sunday night game during week 18).
  • Underwood’s intro lasts roughly three minutes.
  • Multiplied out over the course of a full 17-week TV schedule, that’s roughly one hour.
  • You do the math. That’s right around $17 million an hour.

Not a bad gig if you can get it, eh?!

2. Underwood’s NFL song salary got me to thinking about what other exorbitant incomes are earned by some entertainers.

Here’s a few more that might raise your eyebrows:

  • Jerry Seinfeld was the first actor to earn $1 million per episode for a TV series, and that was back in the 1990s when “Seinfeld” helped originate the iconic “must-see TV” slogan. Seinfeld still earns $40 million to $60 million each year through syndication rights for the series.
  • When “Friends” began its 10-year run on NBC in 1994, the six stars were paid a rather modest $22,500 per episode in the first season. But its popularity changed all of that to the point those earnings rose to $1 million per episode in the last two years of its run. Those salary figures made Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, and Lisa Kudrow the highest-paid actresses of the time. Forbes magazine estimated the cast has collectively earned $816 million. And the money continues to roll in through syndication rights and reruns.
  • “Everybody Loves Raymond” quickly became a fan-favorite show not long after it premiered on CBS in 1996. The show was so popular that in the final two seasons of the show, leading actor Ray Romano made an estimated $1.75 million per episode. He still receives $18 million per year through reruns.
  • “Two and a Half Men,” the CBS sitcom that aired for 12 seasons from 2003 to 2015, featured Charlie Sheen as the lead character for most of the series. But after entering rehabilitation and making derogatory comments about the program’s creator Chuck Lorre, he got kicked off the show and his contract was terminated. Sheen was making $1.8 million per episode at the time. 

3. Here are some of the best “Found on Facebook” items I have come across in recent days:

  • “The best way to die ever: Clint Eastwood shooting you while Morgan Freeman narrates.”
  • “What do you call a man hanging off a coastal path? Cliff.”
  • “Be decisive. The road of life is paved with flat squirrels who could not make a decision.”
  • “My friend thinks he’s smart. He said onions are the only food that make you cry. So I threw a coconut at his face.”
  • “If a man says he will fix it, he will. There is no need to remind him every six months.”

Steve Thought O’ The Day — Do you remember the artists who sang the Sunday Night Football song before Carrie Underwood? If you guessed Faith Hill or Pink you would have been correct.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. Hank Jr.’s Monday Night Football theme is still the best.

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