Weekly survey: What’s your attitude towards the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

We’ve entered the fan voting phase for the nominations for the class of 2021 inductees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. You can vote once a day for anyone you like on the list. But just understand that the winner of the fan voting will get exactly ONE vote in the pool that includes the 900-ish members of the induction committee.

Millions of fans will vote. And collectively, this will add up to 1% of the overall vote, so fill yer boots. This is just one reason many people look at The Hall with cynicism and disgust (That and the fact that as of last year, Whitney Houston qualifies as “rock’n’roll” with her induction. Sure. Whatever.)

Yet some people take the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame very seriously. They believe it’s an important institution worthy of respect. As a museum, I can tell you from personal experience that it’s pretty cool. Seeing some of those exhibits is magical.

So how do you feel?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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17 thoughts on “Weekly survey: What’s your attitude towards the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

  • Not everyone is on Twitter to submit to the survey so I’ll leave my points here. I think the HOF is still important as it honors the artists who have made an impact in music. We’re long past the point of anyone being inducted who actually helped create rock n roll. Chuck Berry, Little Richard etc etc but it’s still important we honor the past and recognize an artists achievements. Should Public Enemy and T Rex have been inducted, absolutely, will Pat Benatar and Adele be inducted, of course. All worthy contributors to the musical art form. Who cares if they aren’t specifically Rock. Rock came from the Blues anyways, it’s all relative.

    • If you truly believe that “We’re long past the point of anyone being inducted who actually helped create rock n roll.” then the HOF and the Corporations are doing a FAR worse disservice to rock and roll than i thought.

      Screamin’ Jay Hawkins ought to be in the HOF right beside Alice Cooper.

      Sun Ra and the Arkestra ought to honoured right alongside P-Funk.

      Charles Mingus should be honoured right alongside Fats Domino.

      All the artists that Townshend covered and mentioned should be in (Big Bill Broonzy, Sonny Boy Williamsom, Mose Allison), as should all the artists that Zeppelin STOLE from (https://www.rollingstone.com/feature/led-zeppelins-10-boldest-rip-offs-223419/)

      Hell, i’d put Pat Boone and his ilk in for all the WRONG reasons: popularizing what was predominately black music and making it “safe” for white kids.

      And speaking of vanilla white boys making a fortune by making “real” rock roll safe for the Corporations, Dave Grohl ought to be “honoured” right alongside Pat Boone.

      There’s a MOUNTAIN of artists that came before Grohl et al that made his immense corporate and financial success possible. Nirvana was/is sort of the “Pat Boone” of indie/punk artists, standing on the shoulders of bands such as Dead Kennedys, Black Flagg, The Replacements, Husker Du, Pixies, Minutemen (Mike Watt is a LEGEND who ought to be in the HOF) …

      Sonic Youth paved a LOT of roads that made the Grohl money machine possible. SY also expanded rock and roll and opened up a whole new sound/approach. You’ll never seen Kim, Thurston, Lee, and Steve in the HOF, nor will you see MC5, the band from which the name Sonic Youth is inspired by (Fred “Sonic” Smith, the MC5’s guitar player).

      So Grohl is in the HOF, but the mountain of musicians that made his success possible are forgotten. Similarly, Pat Boone made a fortune and was celebrated, while black artists made the music and were living in poverty.

      Jaco Pastorius, a bass player who influenced artists like Sting, Flea, and Geddy Lee, ought to be in HOF. Unless you think “We’re long past the point of anyone being inducted who actually helped create rock n roll”, of course. My point here is that until very recently I was ignorant of Jaco, and I am not a young person, so there are always new artists to honour/induct.
      Rock and roll is the people’s music, or at least OUGHT to be. The rock HOF ought to be more like the Vietnam memorial that lists every life lost during that “conflict” and less like the Lincoln Memorial. The people ought to be honoured, not just the giants.

      And what about someone like Steve Albini? Certainly, his music has helped to create rock and roll, and he even engineered a Nirvana album. He’s got indie cred, and was allowed into “the house” by the Suits to help make In Utero, but will he ever be in the HOF. Not bloody likely.

      And what about Duran Duran? They were massive in the 80s and played a BIG role in creating rock and roll videos. Certainly, they should be inducted. Madonna gets the nod but George Michael doesn’t? Depeche Mode is in but Eurythmics can only have sweet dreams about being inducted? I suppose human behaviour explains why Peter Gabriel is inducted but Bjork isn’t.

      The list of oversights is endless.

      “We’re long past the point of anyone being inducted who actually helped create rock n roll”? Consider this: Bono and U2 are in, but Sonny Bono is not.

      • Nothing to add, but thank you for this well thought-out comment, and the effort behind it.

  • I think Bony M should definitely be in there. They had some of the best songs ever. Also, Creedence Clear Water Revival or CCR as they were known, added so much to rock and roll, with a. distinct sound and many songs that were sung by other rock stars!

  • Where is REO SPEEDWAGON? They deserve to be there also!!

  • Too many non Rockers. The guy leading the pack I’ve never heard of and it’s not Rock and Roll.

    • Fela Kuti is ABSOLUTELY Rock and Roll, not only his music but also his life story. His son Femi Kuti is great as well.

      That he is leading the voting would seem to indicate that a LOT of people have indeed heard of him.

      Maybe step away from wall-to-wall Grohl corporate music and explore the world. It’s a beautiful place.

      • I agree 2 many non rockers in there they need 2 redo there format

  • Uriah Heep definitely should be in there or it should not exist. Everyone says it was them along with Deep Purple, Sabbath and Zeppelin that started metal. I guess the millions they sold outside the U.S. don’t count for something. They helped start an iconic music genre and that’s supposed to be part of the criteria to get in. Please, some half ass celebrity get the ball rolling on their inclusion into this sometimes worthwhile “Hall of Fame.”

  • It’s definitely lost It’s way. In recent years, many put in are not rock and roll musicians !!!

  • If it were truly a “rock and roll” hall of fame then the only musicians enshrined would be those with a background or emphasis in southern blues or rock. But that’s not what this is or has ever been. So as a rock and blues fan I could give a rats ass about this institution.

  • The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame…I’ve been laughing ( on account if I don’t I’ll be pissed off ) who or what chooses the inductees? I know that it’s “ music insiders “ and “others “ but please! There have been SO many influential acts that deserve a place in the R&RHOF! First of all BonJovi pushing to get himself in, WOW I guess with enough money you can buy your way in! Foo Fighters, if it wasn’t for Nirvana there would be NO WAY! They wouldn’t of even been able to play at Chunk E Cheese’s! Hummm, let’s see…What about Supertramp, Boston, Styx, Tina Turner, Judas Priest, Motörhead and SO many others that deserve to be there. But as usual Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Beyoncé will be in before them. I guess true talent gets overlooked when one of the other “performers “ with producers, writers, musicians, and a choir in the background have a “ deserving “ place in the R&RHOF. I could go on but what’s the point. This joke of a institution already has their mind made up of who is getting in.

  • The Rock & Roll HOF has gotten far afield from what I believe it should function as. Too many artists are not “rock and roll”.
    I’m all for inclusion however change it to “Music Hall of Fame”. I also believe that too many rock bands and artists with plenty of record sales and at the height of concert performances have been woefully eliminated from consideration. Every year the new list of candidates arrive and I just shake my head why this band or group and not these other ones? I just don’t get it.
    As for this year I’m hopeful that at least the Foo Fighters and the Go-Go’s will be selected……in the name of Rock n Roll!
    Peace out!

    • Foo Fighters are about as “Rock n Roll” as Toronto mayor John Tory.

  • It is so wrong that pat beneatar isn’t in the hall of fame I think it’s so wrong

    • Ms. Benatar will be inducted just as soon as she can “move significant units”.

  • Most of us wonder why it’s called the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame when they include rap,hip hop, country and pop . It’s kind of like the Hard Rock Cafe play Snoop when you walk in the door.


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