It’s that time of year again, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nomination time. This year’s bunch is without a doubt the most eclectic one I’ve ever seen from the hall, and it does suggest that the Hall is finally trying to move on the Halcyon days of the 1960s.
With a few regulars appearing, and a few odd shots there are 19 nominees this year, ranging from essentials to unnecessary. I’ve decided to look at the nominees to the hall and see if I think they belong in the hall and if they will get in.
Why they should be in the hall: As far as genres go Hardcore Punk is more ignored than Disco in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, so Bad Brains would be a solid representation for the genre in the hall.
Who’ve they influenced? Rage Against The Machine, Faith No More, Red Hot Chile Peppers and Soundgarden
Should they be in the hall? Yes, one day in the future perhaps. But not now. They aren’t even the most well known hardcore punk group; instead Black Flag should get in. However an induction would be a big push in the right direction as it could open the inductions to alternative 80s acts whom the Hall painfully ignores.
Will they be in the hall? No. They are the least likely of the nominees to get in this year.
The Washington D.C. Based Hardcore Punks Bad Brains
Why she should be in the hall: As far as 1970s hit makers go you could do worse than Chaka Khan, however she is easily the artist I am least familiar with so I can’t do much in the way of critical thinking regarding her.
Who’ve she influenced? Whitney Houston, TLC, Janet Jackson and Mariah Carey.
Should she be in the hall? Perhaps, she is just as worthy as other inductees like Donna Summers, but at the same time she does represent a genre the Hall, and myself, isn’t fond of.
Will she be in the hall? Maybe, she has the songs. She has enough to maybe get in, but considering the other nominees this year, I don’t think we’ll see her on stage accepting an induction.
Why they should be in the hall: Let’s face it the band is an essential part of the 20th century’s musical tapestry, without them in the hall it just reeks of anti-populism and elitism. The band has the hits, they have the influence and they have a popular figure in Nile Rodgers, they belong in there.
Who’ve they influenced? Daft Punk, Madonna, David Bowie and Prince
Should they be in the hall? Yes.
Will they be in the hall? They play a genre the hall dislikes, they have a record 11 nominations without induction, it doesn’t look good for the band. However as service to the fans the hall could induct them, just so they can finally nominate someone else next year.
Disco Pioneers Chic
Why they should be in the hall: 80s hit makers and one of the most important bands to ever use a synth. They are one of the essential artists of the 1980s, and have continued to be a relevant act, headlining festivals into the 2010s.
Who’ve they influenced? Nine Inch Nails, Coldplay, Pet Shop Boys and The Killers
Should they be in the hall? Yes, without a doubt. There are barely any alternative 80s acts, and there are no 1980s UK indie acts in there. Depeche Mode breaking in would finally open the door to acts like The Smiths, The Cure and New Order among others.
Will they be in the hall? I doubt it. They are pretty much the opposite of what the Hall is likely to induct, they’re from the 80s, they use synths, they have no close connections to legends of the industry, they were bigger in the UK then America. I hope they do get in, but I doubt it.
Electric Light Orchestra
Why they should be in the hall: There aren’t many more bands that were such pleasant inheritors to the Beatles Pop Rock schlock. ELO had it all, connections, uniqueness, and they weren’t too pretentious. There secret weapon is Mr Blue Sky, an anthem far bigger than the band itself in the year 2016.
Who’ve they influenced? Air, Phoenix, Kylie Minogue and Jellyfish
Should they be in the hall? Maybe, they aren’t critically adored, but they did break new ground which nobody else has really touched on. However at the heart of things I feel like they were just an above-average 1970s pop rock band, they don’t really deserve induction on those grounds.
Will they be in the hall? Probably, Jeff Lynne’s Beatles connections and Traveling Wilburys connection could be enough to push the group in alone, and the band is going through a resurgence so I wouldn’t bet against them.
ELO in all their shining seventies glory
Why they should be in the hall: They are a crucial part of the 1980s Alternative music evolution. They bridge the gap between the likes of Guns and Roses and the likes of The Pixies, etc. The band’s influence and Lollapalooza connection is enough for consideration alone.
Who’ve they influenced? The Smashing Pumpkins, Radiohead, Marilyn Mason and Rage Against The Machine
Should they be in the hall? Not now, but in the future yes. Their biggest con is that they only had 2 great albums, and no epic anthem song that will make them an easy choice like several other of the nominees.
Will they be in the hall? I’m inclined to doubt it. I don’t see how they will get in when better 1980s alt rock bands haven’t. At the same time they could play the nominating committee and could be picked by some of the more conservative voters, as they are a guitar centric rock band, which is favoured historically by the hall.
Why she should be in the hall: There aren’t many pop stars as big as Janet Jackson, she has the hits, she has the fame, she has the connections. They isn’t much that stops Janet from qualifying.
Who has she influenced? Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, Spice Girls and Britney Spears
Should she be in the hall? I suppose so. I mean she is like Madonna. She belongs in it because she was huge, but she hasn’t been huge for a while, so to people of my age she simply isn’t notable. She should get in; I just don’t think she should in place of many of the other nominees.
Will she be in the hall? Probably not. If any year was her year it was last year. She had a comeback album, she had a fan drive for induction, but nothing came of it. She could be inducted but the climate simply isn’t as kind to her this year.
The only Jackson child to get out of Michael's shadow, Janet Jackson
J. Geils Band
Why they should be in the hall: They were one of a few 1970s-style rock bands to break into MTV, they have several songs which are still instantly recognizable and they were more then anything else a band that celebrated Rock & Roll.
Who’ve they influenced? George Thorogood, The Black Crowes, Derek Trucks and Jeff Healey.
Should they be in the hall? No. They brought nothing new to the table of rock and roll. They don’t have a notable influence on rock and they simply aren’t a band that belongs in the canon of popular music.
Will they be in the hall? Their only hope is the 60-70 year old voters who loyally support the bands of their youth. They could get in based on that, but if they do it will betray any change the Hall is trying to enact.
Why she should be in the hall: She is one of the most important artists of the folk genre. Without her it is possible to argue Bob Dylan would of never become a name anyone would know, and she also helped create the female singer-songwriter type which has been used by acts like Tracy Chapman and Ani DiFranco.
Who has she influenced? Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt, Ani DiFranco and Indigo Girls
Should she be in the hall? No. Not because she isn’t deserving but because she is not anything to do with contemporary music. Yes she flirted with the pop charts, but she is like Woody Gunthrie or Pete Seeger, neither of them would belong in the Hall, and neither does Joan Baez.
Will she be in the hall? Possibly. Her connection to Bob Dylan is enough to sway plenty of voters but at the same time her adherence to the folk line will make many not vote for her as she is simply not rock and roll of any definition. Honestly I think the Dylan Nobel Prize is enough to push her in based just on a Dylan connection.
Lead proponent in the folk revival and Dylan partner, Joan Baez
Why he should be in the hall: He is the next on the list of Otis Redding, Sam Cooke and so many other soul kings. Few soul artists managed to transfer soul onto record so powerfully and few artists of the soul genre managed to maintain a charting career into the era of funk.
Who has he they influenced? Al Green, Nick Lowe, Otis Clay and Johnnie Taylor
Should he be in the hall? Yes. He is one of the titans of the soul genre, and he is one of the tightest links between southern soul and funk.
Will he be in the hall? No. He simply isn’t well known enough to the general public, nobody except music nerds will care if he gets inducted, and the hall does care about publicity and sales. Also he’s been dead for over 30 years, so the induction would be a sour one. This will likely be his last nomination.
Why they should be in the hall: Don’t stop believing
Who’ve they influenced? Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Europe and Survivor
Should they be in the hall? No. AOR is simply put probably the worst genre to spawn from rock, and Journey are the kings of AOR. Letting them in would be a shame to the hall.
Will they be in the hall? Maybe, the hopes of a reunion and a fan favourite group could be enough to push voters to vote for them, but at the same time AOR is not popular in the hall.
Best known for the song Glee sung, Journey
Why they should be in the hall: There isn’t another band like them. They are the nominee, alongside perhaps Tupac and Chic, who has the biggest influence on the 21st century music. They are the originators of electronic based music and the first great artist of the genre.
Who’ve they influenced? David Bowie, Depeche Mode, Aphex Twin and Joy Division
Should they be in the hall? Yes.
Will they be in the hall? Maybe. They stand a strong chance, but their biggest con is that they are the lead proponents of electronic music; a genre the hall hasn’t been kind to in the past.
Why they should be in the hall: They are, alongside The New York Dolls, the best Proto punk group not yet inducted. They were a blend of everything you love about rock; they were political, hedonistic and angry.
Who’ve they influenced? Sex Pistols, Patti Smith, The Ramones and Joan Jett
Should they be in the hall? Kind of. As far as music history goes they are important, but they lack the material to get into the hall itself, they only have one really recognizable song and that kind of isn’t enough.
Will they be in the hall? I doubt it. They’re a cult band, a good one, but they simply don’t have the same popularity as other nominees.
"Kick Out The Jams Motherfucker" - MC5
Why they should be in the hall: They are the Stones to Nirvana’s Beatles. They are the 2nd most important rock act of the 1990s; they are the most secure induction of the year.
Who’ve they influenced? Creed, Stone Temple Pilots, Everclear and Candlebox
Should they be in the hall? Yes, but they lack the influence or uniqueness that they really should have to be in, they get by purely on their own merits.
Will they be in the hall? Yes, without a doubt.
Why they should be in the hall: Because they were born to be wild. They are simply one of those important late 60s groups who went on to inspire the idea of Heavy Metal.
Who’ve they influenced? Alice Cooper, Blue Oyster Cult, Judas Priest and Motorhead
Should they be in the hall? Not really. They, like MC5, are icons and have definitely secured a place in rock history but they don’t belong in the same annals of the greats, they lack the material, the longevity and the popularity.
Will they be in the hall? Probably not, but they could still reel in the conservative votes and the people who recognize Born to be Wild is greater than those that don’t.
Will they arrive to the induction ceremony from a Magic Carpet Ride? Steppenwolf
Why they should be in the hall: Few bands were as influential on the sound of the new wave.
Who’ve they influenced? The Strokes, Guided by Voices, Air and Weezer.
Should they be in the hall? Yes, the real question is should they be in this year. I don’t know about that, for me they are my 7th choice. I think we will see them in before 2020 however.
Will they be in the hall? Perhaps, they didn’t get in last year, and that was an easier time for them to qualify in comparison to this year’s well-picked bunch of nominees.
Why they should be in the hall: They are the last credible British Invasion act to be inducted into the hall (Alongside the Moody Blues). They have one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the 1960s and have songs that are as great as anyone else’s.
Who’ve they influenced? The Bee Gees, Genesis, Elliott Smith and XTC
Should they be in the hall? Yes, they may lack the material, but without them chamber pop and Twee pop wouldn’t be the same if it even existed.
Will they be in the hall? Yes, however I doubt it’ll be this year, only because Tupac and Pearl Jam have 2 of the places locked, and the Zombies won’t win the fan vote so that leaves only two possible places for them, so it’ll be a tight fight.
"Is it to late to say I'm sorry?" - The Rock Hall to The Zombies
Why should he be in the hall: Because he is one of the icons of Hip Hop and is still a recognizable figure on all sides of the globe. He has the hits, popularity, influence and icon to go in first try.
Who has he they influenced? 50 Cent, DMX, Drake and Eminem
Should he be in the hall? Yes.
Will he be in the hall? Yes.
Why they should be in the hall: They are one of the great Prog Rock bands, they embody all the pretentiousness, virtuosity and pure thrill of the genre, and also have hits. They have every feature you want out of a rock band.
Who’ve they influenced? Marillion, Dream Theatre, Todd Rundgren and Kansas
Should they be in the hall? Yes, they should have been in decades ago.
Will they be in the hall? Yes, I think that despite the hall’s hatred of prog rock; Yes will be the band to utilize the fan vote.
Will fans of the band celebrate their induction by screaming their name? - Yes
My predictions for who will be inducted
If they induct 6 my bet is for Journey… unfortunately.
My personal selection
If they induct 6, my 6th would be The Zombies