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Thread started 10/05/17 4:44am

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2018 Rock Hall Nominees

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Thu, Oct 5


The nominations for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's Class of 2018 are in.

Inductees into the 2018 Rock Hall will be voted on by a group of more than 900 artists, historians and music-industry professionals.
Here's the full list of nominees:



Bon Jovi

Kate Bush

The Cars

Depeche Mode

Dire Straits

Eurythmics

J. Geils Band

Judas Priest

LL Cool J

MC5

The Meters

Moody Blues

Radiohead

Rage Against the Machine

Rufus featuring Chaka Khan

Nina Simone

Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Link Wray

The Zombies

🈁 Fools say to themselves, "There is no God."
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Reply #1 posted 10/05/17 6:07am

LittleBLUECorv
ette

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2 R&B acts, no Janet this time.
PRINCE: Always and Forever
MICHAEL JACKSON: Always and Forever
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Reply #2 posted 10/05/17 6:44am

2045RadicalMat
tZ

3 of my personal favorites:

EURYTHMICS
DEPECHE MODE
JUDAS PRIEST


Eye no eye will win no fans here for saying but, like Beyonce (*who's probably already in there for some reason) Janet only had about 2 good albums; (*which DOES put her far ahead of most of these acts inducted lately)...

...so, I guess the point I was trying to make is null and void. Ur right, where's Janet's nom?


Sheeeeit.....I'd give anything to see a Eurythmics show. ....even though I believe it'll never happen. Wish i could've seen them on the BE YOURSELF TONIGHT TOUR or the REVENGE TOUR. Top of their game
[Edited 10/5/17 6:46am]
"Damn Dolores, pick another subject, please...introduce the carpet to something other than your knees...."
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Reply #3 posted 10/05/17 8:35am

namepeace

If I were going to be objective and spread the wealth (LL belongs as a pioneer for the solo MC, and so do the Meters, but for now):

Depeche Mode

Judas Priest

Radiohead

Rufus featuring Chaka Khan

Sister Rosetta Tharpe -- It's Time!

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #4 posted 10/05/17 8:46am

2045RadicalMat
tZ

namepeace said:

If I were going to be objective and spread the wealth (LL belongs as a pioneer for the solo MC, and so do the Meters, but for now):

Depeche Mode

Judas Priest

Radiohead

Rufus featuring Chaka Khan

Sister Rosetta Tharpe -- It's Time!

Since they already "honored" PEARL JAM...It's easy to see that RADIOHEAD will get in instantly FOR BROADCAST/AUDIENCE reasons....not really for the old way it used to be

U know... Time, Proof, Accomplishments, usual retirement... etc.

Even Eddie Vedder commented on how it was a bit "premature"

"Damn Dolores, pick another subject, please...introduce the carpet to something other than your knees...."
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Reply #5 posted 10/05/17 8:59am

jjhunsecker

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J Geils band is my #1 choice !

Radiohead is a shoo-in , I think

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Reply #6 posted 10/05/17 9:16am

lazycrockett

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Bon Jovi will get in just so HBO has something to put on its network. Radiohead shouldn't have an issue. Kate should get in, but that probably wont happen.

Cars No

Mode No

Eurythmics No.

The Most Important Thing In Life Is Sincerity....Once You Can Fake That, You Can Fake Anything.
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Reply #7 posted 10/05/17 9:30am

namepeace

2045RadicalMattZ said:



Since they already "honored" PEARL JAM...It's easy to see that RADIOHEAD will get in instantly FOR BROADCAST/AUDIENCE reasons....not really for the old way it used to be

U know... Time, Proof, Accomplishments, usual retirement... etc.

Even Eddie Vedder commented on how it was a bit "premature"


I agree generally. Radiohead has made forward-thinking, innovative music for 20 years. While there's a "broadcast/fan service" element to the choice, Radiohead does have a substantive legacy.

I also think Sister Rosetta Tharpe will get in for similar reasons -- to have a "roots/legends" component to the induction for broadcast purposes. The social media videos of her performances that have surfaced in recent years are bound to have an impact.

I feel for the innovative bands stuck between major eras, like MC5, who have strong cases but will have to wait to get in.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #8 posted 10/05/17 9:31am

namepeace

LittleBLUECorvette said:

2 R&B acts, no Janet this time.


I think Nina and Sister R "took her place," but you know . . .

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #9 posted 10/05/17 10:33am

rogifan

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RRHOF is a joke. I mean Guns n Roses got in before Rush did. Also they need to have some rule where if you don’t get in within 5 years of eligibility then you’re no longer eligible. Seeing acts get in just because people complain year after year is BS. Bon Jovi was first eligible in 2009. They only reason they’re nominated this year is because Jon Bon Jovi complained about RRHOF honchos last year. It is amazing though that Bon Jovi isn’t in but a band like Green Day is. Heck even Ringo Starr is in as a solo artist. WTF?
[Edited 10/5/17 10:42am]
Paisley Park is in your heart
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Reply #10 posted 10/05/17 12:42pm

LittleBLUECorv
ette

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namepeace said:



LittleBLUECorvette said:


2 R&B acts, no Janet this time.


I think Nina and Sister R "took her place," but you know . . .


Rosetta probably got a nod because the past year or so a FB post has been saying she's the mother of Rock & Roll. I bet this is her first time being nominated too ... she provably goes in as a early influence.

There was just a Nina Simone film I believe, that's her nomination.
PRINCE: Always and Forever
MICHAEL JACKSON: Always and Forever
-----
Live Your Life How U Wanna Live It
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Reply #11 posted 10/05/17 1:36pm

SoulAlive

I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted
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Reply #12 posted 10/05/17 4:34pm

LittleBLUECorv
ette

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SoulAlive said:

I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted

If Chic can't get in, I doubt they let Rufus.in.
PRINCE: Always and Forever
MICHAEL JACKSON: Always and Forever
-----
Live Your Life How U Wanna Live It
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Reply #13 posted 10/05/17 4:50pm

luvsexy4all

SoulAlive said:

I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted

just bought 4 Rufus CDs for $8....

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Reply #14 posted 10/05/17 6:03pm

MickyDolenz

The Zombies React to Rock Hall Nomination: 'You Know You're Not Forgotten'
10/5/2017 by Joe Lynch Billboard

The Zombies perform on Day 5 of the RBC Bluesfest on July 11, 2017 in Ottawa, Canada.

Despite releasing just two studio albums during their initial run in the '60s (one of which failed to find much of an audience despite later being hailed as one of the best albums of all time), the Zombies are now regarded as one of the most respected and influential British bands of the era. Sure, their enduring, iconoclastic Billboard hits ("She's Not There," "Tell Her No") are part of that, but the bulk of their legend relies upon that aforementioned album, 1968's Odessey and Oracle, which continues to grow in stature with each passing year. While new generations may struggle to understand the appeal of certain Flower Power hitmakers, the restrained, elegant beauty of Odessey is universal.

On Thursday (Oct. 5), the Zombies were once again recognized for their immense (albeit slow-and-steady-wins-the-race) impact on music with a well-deserved Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nomination. Billboard got on the phone separately with the band's Rod Argent and Chris White, its two principal songwriters, to talk about their elation at the Rock Hall nomination and why Odessey still feels so relevant 50 years later.

When you heard about the nomination, what was your first reaction?

Rod Argent: Well, we heard this morning. I phoned everybody else. Everyone in the band feels exactly the same as me -- we feel honored and delighted. It’s not something we expected. I mean, third-time nomination. We’re hoping the third-time is lucky for us. We’re delighted and excited.

Chris White: I’ve only just heard. I'm absolutely pleased, to be quite honest. I’ve been out in my car all day, so I haven’t been in touch with anybody so I just found out when I came back. I’m very excited and quite honored because of all the luminaries who have gone before us.

This isn't your first nomination, so what does that feel like coming around again? Are you hopeful?

White: Oh, I’m hopeful. I mean, we’ve been going for so long. We’ve gone for years. It would be great to go in because who's gone in before, which have been heroes and people we’ve appreciated as well. It’s so nice to get this recognition -- again. It’s wonderful, to be quite honest.

From my perspective, it might be the time for you guys. The album has grown in stature over the years, and you guys were on the anniversary tour, so I feel like the album's greatness is front and center in a way it wasn't before.

White: It feels like justification for writing it, to be quite honest. Because of course back then nobody was interested in it when it came out, but we enjoyed doing it. That was reward enough in the way of just making the album. I mean, the biggest thing about music is making music that moves people, and over the last 50 years we’ve moved more and more people. Some are great stars who have quoted us in being instrumental in making them like music. That’s the wonderful thing. That’s the nice thing. When people come up to you and say, ‘That song really moved me,’ or ‘We played it at our wedding.’ That sort of thing.

Argent: I really hope you’re right, Joe. It’d be great. I mean, it really would. We had a No. 1 hit with “Time of the Season” in 1969, but in fact, we recorded [Odessey] in 1967 and then broken up. And then, you know, kept in touch with each other of course. But, Colin [Blunstone] and I through a complete accident around the year 2000 started playing for fun and in the most gradual way, the momentum gathered. It’s exciting that the band is better than ever now and to have created success with the new stuff as well, and to feel that we can actually relate to people of this generation as well. For us to be in the position now where people are getting excited about us and hopefully getting into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, it’s just great.

Going back to the time when you were writing that album, do you remember what kind of headspace you were in? And after you broke up and "Time of the Season" became a big hit, was that frustrating?

Argent: Basically, we were in a very happy place. We just loved -- as we do now even -- we loved getting excited about creating new material, being able to record it. At that particular moment in time, we’d started to get quite frustrated with the way that some of our recent singles had been recorded and produced. Chris and I shared a flat, and I remember the process of writing that album. I would go from one room to another and say, ‘Chris, I’ve got this idea.’ And he would come into the other room and play me what he had. We wrote it between us, in that flat, and we were very excited to be in the position of being able to record as we wanted for the first time, exactly as we wanted things to sound. We were having a ball. We were very excited. We thought we made a great record at the time. We got some great reviews, actually, but nobody listened to it. It just didn’t sell. It was, as you know, 18 months later in the States, there was one DJ in Idaho -- in Boise, Idaho, there was one guy who loved the single “Time of the Season,” and by that time, we’d broken up. Eighteen months, I was producing the Colin Blunstone album, which I also think is a beautiful album, and I was forming Argent and starting to write material for that, and we were in a very happy position at that point of being in New York as “Time of the Season” hit [No. 3] in Billboard [Hot 100]. And it made our negotiations with Clive Davis very easy -- you know, for the new Argent stuff and the new Colin Blunstone stuff. It was a very happy time in a strange way for us, even though we were frustrated that no one listened to the album initially and we had to break up. We were just so full of creative ideas, and the energy and the joy of being able to do what we wanted to do. It wasn’t an unhappy time.

White: We were very happy. I’m very lucky to work with such a great voice as Colin’s, and he gets better and better. The nice thing is we remained friends. Rod put Argent together after the Zombies finished and produced Colin’s first three solo albums, and we’re still friends.

How was it bringing those songs back on the road for the 50th anniversary tour?

Argent: It’s still a joy to play those things and be able to do it. I mean, when Paul Weller came to all three nights of the Odyssey and Oracle premiere that we did in in London in 2008, he said, "That was absolutely fabulous," and he bought us champagne. It was lovely. It’s still his favorite album, I know, he told me just a couple weeks ago that it was his favorite album, but he said at that time -- and I think he’s right -- he said, ‘Don’t just keep doing it forever because it will lose its specialness.’ And I really believe that. I really think it was something to celebrate the 50th anniversary and then, with a big smile, draw a line under it and move on.

If the nomination is confirmed and you're in the Class of 2018, how will that feel?

Argent: I know there are some people that actually portray themselves as unaffected and don’t care and, ‘Oh, well, it would be nice, but, really I don’t get it. It’s not something that I particularly want.’ We’re not those people at all. It feels like a joy that people are taking this much notice of us. If we did manage to get inducted, we’d be over the moon. We’d be flattered, gratified and absolutely delighted.

White: I would be elated! Listen, being in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I’ve seen many people inducted into that, and it’s an honor -- to be quite honest. Votes from all the luminaries. It’s a bit like people voting for the Oscars, I should imagine. I love the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, so it is wonderful to be nominated again. You know you’re not forgotten.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
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Reply #15 posted 10/05/17 8:02pm

namepeace

LittleBLUECorvette said:

SoulAlive said:
I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted
If Chic can't get in, I doubt they let Rufus.in.


Chaka may be the difference.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #16 posted 10/05/17 8:04pm

namepeace

LittleBLUECorvette said:

namepeace said:


I think Nina and Sister R "took her place," but you know . . .

Rosetta probably got a nod because the past year or so a FB post has been saying she's the mother of Rock & Roll. I bet this is her first time being nominated too ... she provably goes in as a early influence. There was just a Nina Simone film I believe, that's her nomination.


Agreed. See Reply No. 7.

Tho the Simone film was poorly received and could actually hurt her chances.

[Edited 10/5/17 20:04pm]

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #17 posted 10/06/17 5:27am

kitbradley

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namepeace said:



LittleBLUECorvette said:


SoulAlive said:
I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted

If Chic can't get in, I doubt they let Rufus.in.


Chaka may be the difference.


Yes. Chic's success was short lived. Chaka consistantly sold thru the 70s, 80s and early 90s. Her influence is indeniable. I think they have a good chance this year.
"It's not nice to fuck with K.B.! All you haters will see!" - Kitbradley
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Reply #18 posted 10/06/17 6:16am

LittleBLUECorv
ette

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kitbradley said:

namepeace said:



LittleBLUECorvette said:


SoulAlive said:
I wanna see Rufus featuring Chaka Khan get inducted

If Chic can't get in, I doubt they let Rufus.in.


Chaka may be the difference.


Yes. Chic's success was short lived. Chaka consistantly sold thru the 70s, 80s and early 90s. Her influence is indeniable. I think they have a good chance this year.

But it's the band, not her solo career. Chaka had much more success in Rufus than solo. Only two top 40 pop singles comparred to ten top 40 with Rufus in a 10 yr period.
PRINCE: Always and Forever
MICHAEL JACKSON: Always and Forever
-----
Live Your Life How U Wanna Live It
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Reply #19 posted 10/06/17 8:27am

SoulAlive

They had better induct Chaka,with Rufus or as a solo artist....or I'm gonna be pissed mad

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Reply #20 posted 10/06/17 8:37am

LittleBLUECorv
ette

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SoulAlive said:

They had better induct Chaka,with Rufus or as a solo artist....or I'm gonna be pissed mad


Wait, she was nominated as a solo act last year right?
PRINCE: Always and Forever
MICHAEL JACKSON: Always and Forever
-----
Live Your Life How U Wanna Live It
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Reply #21 posted 10/06/17 8:48am

namepeace

LittleBLUECorvette said:

kitbradley said:
Yes. Chic's success was short lived. Chaka consistantly sold thru the 70s, 80s and early 90s. Her influence is indeniable. I think they have a good chance this year.
But it's the band, not her solo career. Chaka had much more success in Rufus than solo. Only two top 40 pop singles comparred to ten top 40 with Rufus in a 10 yr period.


True, but the Hall gets a two-fer if they induct RfCK.

They are able to say they inducted an R&B band in Rufus.


And they're able to bootstrap Chaka in, because she's synonymous with the band anyway.

Having Chaka in this way means more inventory for other solo "R&B" artists (Janet et al.) who won't have to "compete" with Chaka at the nomination or voting stage.

Not saying it's fair, I'd love to see Chaka get in solo as well as with Rufus, but that's how I see it happening.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #22 posted 10/06/17 9:38am

wonder505

Alright, induct Janet already so I can stop hearing about it. lol

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Reply #23 posted 10/06/17 11:37am

jackson35

it's time for labelle and the pointer sisters to get in

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Reply #24 posted 10/06/17 3:06pm

PennyPurple

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https://www.rockhall.com/vote-results

Here are the results so far.

<iframe src="//www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-TQQ3V3" height="0" width="0" style="display:none;visibility:hidden"></iframe>

Current Standings

68645 Votes

Bon Jovi

48966 Votes

Dire Straits

43000 Votes

Moody Blues

41606 Votes

The Cars

32114 Votes

Eurythmics

26457 Votes

Depeche Mode

26291 Votes

Judas Priest

23179 Votes

J. Geils Band

19645 Votes

Radiohead

19627 Votes

The Zombies

16081 Votes

Nina Simone

16074 Votes

Rage Against the Machine

12509 Votes

Kate Bush

11375 Votes

LL Cool J

7231 Votes

Rufus featuring Chaka Khan

6954 Votes

Sister Rosetta Tharpe

6680 Votes

The MC5

6430 Votes

The Meters

6203 Votes

Link Wray

[Edited 10/6/17 15:09pm]

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Reply #25 posted 10/07/17 9:22pm

Goddess4Real

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Happy to see Kate Bush finally get recognised nod

Keep Calm & Listen To Prince
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Reply #26 posted 10/08/17 1:33am

NorthC

Goddess4Real said:

Happy to see Kate Bush finally get recognised nod


yeahthat
Don't ever lose your dreams.
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Reply #27 posted 10/09/17 12:23pm

kitbradley

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LittleBLUECorvette said:

kitbradley said:


Yes. Chic's success was short lived. Chaka consistantly sold thru the 70s, 80s and early 90s. Her influence is indeniable. I think they have a good chance this year.

But it's the band, not her solo career. Chaka had much more success in Rufus than solo. Only two top 40 pop singles comparred to ten top 40 with Rufus in a 10 yr period.

I cant judge the success of nether Chaka or Rufus based on their showings on the Pop charts. Rufus was not a highly successful Pop band. Chaka was not a highly successful Pop solo singer. Both were on the R&B side, however. NWA got inducted with only two original albums and no Top 40 Pop singles.

True, Chaka had stronger Pop chart positions with Rufus. However, You have to remember during the early stages of her solo career, there was a very strong backlash against black female singers at pop radio. From 1980-1983, the only black women who could get on those stations were Donna Summer, The Pointer Sisters and Diana Ross. 1984 saw the door open wider with Tina, Chaka, Deniece and Shannon joining that still small list. I believe if you ask most pop/rock enthusiasts today what song they associate most with Chaka, it would be IFFY, the biggest hit of her career. When I listen to classic Pop radio today, its mostly C.K.'s solo songs that i hear. With Rufus, its primarily Aint Nobody and (rarely) TMSG.

However, I do believe Chaka has a much better chance of being inducted with Rufus based on one thing...the other members of the band are men. I highly doubt Tina Turner would be there if she were nominated as a solo act. Gladys Knight definately would not be.
"It's not nice to fuck with K.B.! All you haters will see!" - Kitbradley
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Reply #28 posted 10/09/17 1:40pm

namepeace

kitbradley said:

LittleBLUECorvette said:
But it's the band, not her solo career. Chaka had much more success in Rufus than solo. Only two top 40 pop singles comparred to ten top 40 with Rufus in a 10 yr period.
I cant judge the success of nether Chaka or Rufus based on their showings on the Pop charts. Rufus was not a highly successful Pop band. Chaka was not a highly successful Pop solo singer. Both were on the R&B side, however. NWA got inducted with only two original albums and no Top 40 Pop singles. True, Chaka had stronger Pop chart positions with Rufus. However, You have to remember during the early stages of her solo career, there was a very strong backlash against black female singers at pop radio. From 1980-1983, the only black women who could get on those stations were Donna Summer, The Pointer Sisters and Diana Ross. 1984 saw the door open wider with Tina, Chaka, Deniece and Shannon joining that still small list. I believe if you ask most pop/rock enthusiasts today what song they associate most with Chaka, it would be IFFY, the biggest hit of her career. When I listen to classic Pop radio today, its mostly C.K.'s solo songs that i hear. With Rufus, its primarily Aint Nobody and (rarely) TMSG. However, I do believe Chaka has a much better chance of being inducted with Rufus based on one thing...the other members of the band are men. I highly doubt Tina Turner would be there if she were nominated as a solo act. Gladys Knight definately would not be.



Great points; great post.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #29 posted 10/10/17 4:14pm

MickyDolenz

Who Will Make the Rock Hall in 2018?
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine | October 5 2017 | Pitchfork
Bob Berg/Getty Images; David Redfern/Redferns; Paul Natkin/Getty Images; Peter Still/Redferns; Frank Micelotta/ImageDirect

What can we glean from today’s nominations for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame? First of all, the nominating committee—an elite group that differs from the voters, of which I am one—is attached to the number 19. Last year, they also served up 19 nominations, the longest list since 1990, and this number suggests an awareness that they’re reaching the point where very few superstars are left to induct. There are plenty of worthy acts who have yet to make a ballot—if you follow this sort of thing, you can recite the names by heart (Roxy Music, T. Rex, Television, King Crimson, Warren Zevon, etc.)—and apart from maybe Pixies, there are few who could rally enough support to make it into the Hall the first year they’re nominated. That's the important thing to remember whenever you enter a debate about the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame: the nominating committee is concerned with the art, while the voters are often swayed by fame.

The class of 2018’s long list may include nine first-time nominees, but it feels a little soft. Apart from Radiohead, a cross-generational consensus choice for the Last Important Rock Band, the list feels like a collection of leftovers: artists who either should’ve been inducted already or have little chance of actually getting inside the museum. Also, there seems to be a surplus of acts that are liked but not necessarily loved: most of the world owned a copy of Brothers in Arms by the late ’80s, but are Dire Straits the kind of band who inspires devotion in 2017? This warm indifference works in the favor of nearly every artist on this ballot, because it’s full of acts who seem to be plausible inductees: musicians who will get in eventually, so 2018 may as well be their year.

With that out of the way, who will actually be inducted in Cleveland on April 14, 2018? What follows are my best guesses—not a reflection of my own voting ballot or a judgment call on who is most deserving.

Definites
Radiohead (eligible in 2017, never nominated)
Eurythmics (eligible in 2006, never nominated)
Moody Blues (eligible in 1989, never nominated)
Nina Simone (eligible in 1983, never nominated)

Radiohead may disdain such an acknowledgment, but there’s no chance they won’t get in at the first chance. Over the last 20 years, they’ve come to be seen as the gold standard in rock: restless and innovative in both sound and business, disinterested in pursuing a conventional route to stardom (though it could be argued theirs is a carefully maintained image). The other band that seems a certainty this year is Eurythmics, not only a representative stand-in for a host of new wave groups but an industry favorite as well. Annie Lennox’s solo blockbusters help on the visibility front, and Dave Stewart still gets work as a songwriter and producer (even though he hasn’t had a hit since co-writing No Doubt’s “Underneath It All” in 2001).

Apart from those two, the other likely inductees are Moody Blues, the ornate prog-rock mainstays beloved by many who take the Rock Hall very, very seriously. Then there’s Nina Simone, whose presence on the ballot comes after a wave of worthy rediscovery in the mainstream, sparked by Liz Garbus’ 2015 documentary What Happened, Miss Simone? Traditionalists may make the argument that Nina Simone wasn't rock’n’roll, but she defied any possible classification—if that’s not rock’n’roll, what is?

On The Bubble
Bon Jovi (eligible in 2008, nominated in 2011)
Dire Straits (eligible in 2003, never nominated)
Rage Against the Machine (eligible in 2017, never nominated)
The Cars (eligible in 2003, nominated in 2016 and 2017)
J. Geils Band (eligible in 1995, nominated in 2005, 2006, 2011, 2017)
Judas Priest (eligible in 1999, never nominated)
LL Cool J (eligible in 2009, nominated in 2010, 2011, 2014)
MC5 (eligible in 1991, nominated in 2003, 2017)
The Zombies (eligible in 1989, nominated in 2014, 2017)

If there seems to be more on-the-bubble acts than shoo-ins this year, chalk it up to a deliberate decision by the nominating committee to push acts they’d like to see in the Hall, along with major names who’ve never made the ballot. If I had to guess which one of these nine has the best chance of making it in, it’d be Dire Straits. Forget whatever influence they may or may not have had on the War On Drugs—the world-dominating popularity of 1985’s Brothers in Arms (14x platinum in the UK, 9x platinum in the U.S.) has a residual effect, ensuring votes from those who frankly don’t think about their ballots all that closely.

The only other on-the-bubble act that could claim a similar argument is the Cars, the power-pop pioneers who had a strong run of radio hits in the ’70s and ’80s. The thing is, the Cars showed up on the RRHOF ballot in the last two years, suggesting there may not be a strong bloc of internal supporters for the band. The same could be said of the Zombies, the wonderfully odd British Invasion band who recorded a minor psych masterpiece in 1968’s Odessey and Oracle. They’ve made it on the ballot two times prior, but their subtle charms could make them a winner in an off year like this, especially with the Rock Hall currently running an exhibit on them.

As for those with worse chances: The J. Geils Band are cherished by some old-school rock fans, but it’s the kind of listener who prefers high-octane live boogie to casual blues grooves. Nobody did this better than J. Geils Band, but it’s a sound that now seems older than its Motown inspirations—a relic of when a hard-working band could travel from town to town on the promise of a good time. That captures a particular era, but it’s not a sound that resonates in the 21st century.

The same can’t be said of LL Cool J, whose best music still feels bracing. The nominating committee clearly wants LL in the Hall—this is his fourth time on a ballot—but he’s likely hurt by his continuing success. He not only was one of the first hip-hop artists to cross over, he’s one of the first to mount a comeback, and that was long before he became a cuddly TV star. Basically, LL wound up undercutting any myth that could be built up around his rap career, so he’s not as sexy a name as Tupac.

On the opposite end of the spectrum is Judas Priest, hailed as one of the greatest metal bands. Too bad for them, metal is a genre the RRHOF voters hate more than prog rock. Metallica and Black Sabbath are the only metal acts inducted to date, and it’s hard to see Judas Priest—who named themselves after a Bob Dylan song but never had a crossover single—breaking through, especially upon first nomination.

After two previous nominations, maybe MC5’s politically charged rock could function as a protest vote for 2018, but let’s be honest: the Detroit proto-punks are adored by those in the know but simply not known by the world at large (has Jennifer Aniston and Justin Timberlake sporting their T-shirts truly achieved nothing?!). Funnily enough, one member of MC5’s cult is Tom Morello, also part of the RRHOF nominating committee and, of course, Rage Against the Machine. This gives RATM a foot in the door to Cleveland, but the band isn’t exactly beloved by the middle-of-the-road masses. Their socially conscious rap-rock helps the Rock Hall acknowledge that divisive strain of alt-rock, but they never had a hit single—and having one song that everybody knows is almost a prerequisite for induction.

That leaves Bon Jovi, who have more than their share of big hits. They also made more than their fair share of industry enemies, which isn’t surprising if you’ve heard “Burning Bridges,” their vitriolic 2015 sayonara to Universal (rendered somewhat impotent when Bon Jovi re-upped with the record conglomerate in 2016). That’s the Bon Jovi conundrum: follow the charts and the band would seem to be a shoo-in for induction, but Jon Bon Jovi was never here to make friends and few critics like his music, so he’s facing an uphill battle.

Impossible
Kate Bush (eligible in 2003, never nominated)
Depeche Mode (eligible in 2006, nominated in 2017)
The Meters (eligible in 1994, nominated in 1997, 2013, 2014, 2018)
Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan (eligible in 1999, nominated in 2012; Chaka Khan nominated individually in 2016, 2017)
Sister Rosetta Tharpe (eligible in 1986, never nominated)
Link Wray (eligible in 1986, nominated 2014)

For hardcore music fans, this category makes their heart hurt, because every one of these acts have strong arguments for induction. Take Kate Bush, a brilliant, adventurous singer-songwriter who laid the groundwork for generations of eccentrics. It’s why her work retains (and even grows) its power over time, but it’s also why it doesn’t appeal to the world at large.

New Orleans funk pioneers the Meters—who are as good as a band can be, as evidenced by the widespread sampling and appropriation of their sound—won’t make it in either, simply because they lack name recognition. The same can be said of Rufus, but at least everybody knows “Tell Me Something Good”—enough to warrant induction in the minds of some voters. Link Wray, remarkably, suffers from the same problem. His work gets reduced to “Rumble,” a visionary slice of rock’n’roll sleaze that’s so strong, people tend to ignore his greaseball ’60s sides and ’70s country-rock.

Depeche Mode had many more hits than just one, but the Rock Hall has shown reluctance towards any artist who entertains the very idea of synthesizers, so it’s unlikely they’ll induct a band defined by synths. They’re the definition of a band who defies the illusion of “real rock” because their songs sound as good performed on an acoustic guitar as they do on a computer, which shouldn’t win them votes among the more traditionally rockist blocs.

This leaves Sister Rosetta Tharpe, the trailblazer who upended gospel with her blues guitar runs. That description alone tells you why she should be in the Rock Hall, but sadly for many voters, she’s a name read in history books—a part of the past, not of ongoing history. She likely will get in, but with a caveat: under the Rock Hall’s umbrella of pre-rock influences. Better than not at all.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
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Forums > Music: Non-Prince > 2018 Rock Hall Nominees