Question: Superstition can help win football games, right?
Football fans have been known to grasp at any talisman they can to help their team make it to one of the most-watched U.S. sporting events of the year. And Denver Broncos fan habits, as we all know, are no different.
Leah Shafer, owner of Lone Tree’s Skin by Leah, just didn’t expect to be credited for any of the Denver team’s good fortune.
The medical aesthetician and aspiring country artist started singing the national anthem at Broncos home games eight years ago. She gained acclaim as the Broncos piled up wins. Soon, fans realized a pattern: in every home game where Shafer performed (which she believes has been about 16 times), the team won. Thus, fans began to know her as the team’s “good luck charm.”
“It’s an honor. I love singing the song,” Shafer says of her game performances. “I like to do it respectfully, because it’s not about me. The performance is about what the song is about.”
Shafer hit a bit of luck herself securing the role. For most performers, breaking into the national-anthem scene can present a challenge. Shafer, however, didn’t even need an audition.
Broncos’ director of cheerleaders and game entertainment, Teresa Shear, saw Shafer, who was once a successful gospel singer on the West Coast, perform at her Colorado church and that was all the display of skills Shear needed.
Unfortunately for fans, Shafer’s highly regarded winning streak came to a halt on Sept. 29, as the Broncos lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars in a nail-biting 26-24 defeat. Shafer says she hates to see the Broncos lose, but, “secretly, I’m glad that I am no longer the good luck charm. No more pressure, and I can focus on singing.”
Shafer has been active in the music industry since joining singing gospel music and she intends on making her mark in the country music scene soon. (Catch her melodies here.)
But no matter how far Shafer’s talent takes her, there’s one moment in lights that will continue to rank supreme: “commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Super Bowl at the Colorado State Capitol, when Peyton Manning was retiring. You look out and there’s so many people celebrating the Broncos’ Super Bowl win.”