The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame came out with its list of nominees:
If it were up to me (which sadly, it is not) I would give it to the innovators not the imitators (thanks to My Morning Jacket’s “Wordless Chorus” for always keeping that lyric in my mind). Here is the list and my assessment.
The Cure–Innovators – They made Goth mainstream
Joan Jett & the Blackhearts– Imitators Intriguing story because she started as a teenager but one hit (and albeit a great rocker on stage) should not gain entrance into the Hall.
Heart–Imitators – First female fronted rock band but still songs are for the most part generic.
Freddie King–Innovators – Inspired Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Guitar player with an unbelievable sound.
The Spinners–Imitator – Great singles but ground had already been broken by Motown in the 1960s
Beastie Boys–Innovators – Three jerks turn hip hop upside down and reinvent the genre
Donovan–Imitators – Great at mimicking other artists
Laura Nyro–Innovator – Amazing singer-songwriter and unique phrasing of songs. One of a kind artist. Inspiring too many to mention
Red Hot Chili Peppers–Imitators – Unique ability to still get constantly played on Alternative radio and yet has nothing to unique to say. They’re like the Hall & Oates of the 1970s, just not as talented. They’re a shoe-in to get in the Hall as they’re probably the most popular out of everyone on this list. And why isn’t Hall & Oates in the Hall (or even in the Oates)?
War–Imitators Great singles but Santana and Sly & The Family Stone were there first
Guns N’ Roses–Innovators – Single handily re-invigorated the rock scene in 1987
Rufus with Chaka Khan–Imitators – Great singles but that’s not enough to get in.
Donna Summer–Innovator – Queen of Disco, nuff said
The inductees will be announced in the coming weeks. We’ll see how well I did.