The world will be watching “The Fight of the Century” between Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Manny Pacquiao, and right afterward Pacquiao will put on another show: “The Concert of the Century.”
Win or lose, Pacquiao will perform old pop ballads that are usually only heard in karaoke bars and Filipino parties. Scheduled to make guest appearances at the MGM Grand Garden concert include Bruno Mars, apl.de.ap from The Black Eyed Peas, Lea Salonga, and Charice Pempengco. Justin Bieber is also expected to crash the concert.
If Pacquiao wins, Mayweather has agreed to perform one song with him: “Sometimes When We Touch.” Pacquiao recorded the 70s soft rock ballad shortly after performing it on Jimmy Kimmel Live! It is commonly regarded as Pacquiao's go-to karaoke song.
If Mayweather wins, Pacquiao will sing R. Kelly's “The World's Greatest” to him.
"I've always related to that song. It really speaks to me and inspires me. Just like I'm the greatest fighter of all time, I think that is the greatest song of all time," the undefeated Mayweather said.
A lot is riding on this contest for both fighters. For Mayweather, his perfect record and his place among history’s greatest boxers are at stake. Many critics had accused him of avoiding Pacquiao to protect his record, but winning this bout could weaken that argument.
In many ways Pacquiao is the pride of the Philippines. The country is at a virtual standstill whenever he fights. Everybody watches him. He’s practically a national hero.
In an independent poll, Pacquiao placed second in national hero rankings only behind José Rizal. Many experts suspect if he wins this upcoming match he could become the official national hero of the Philippines.
Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer, is concerned about the concert being a distraction. “He already has a lot on his plate with his congress duties, and his basketball coaching,” Roach said.
Pacquiao does not see the concert as a distraction.
“I am still 100 percent focused on this fight. And I’m not worried because singing just comes naturally to me. I can sing all the time. It’s part of my culture,” the eight-division world champion said.
A portion of the proceeds from the concert will go towards Pacquiao’s new charitable foundation Karaoke Heals, which will set up state-of-the-art karaoke systems inside hospitals.