Six Major Backing Bands enter the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame

Our apologies as we should have put this up five days ago....but considering that it took the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame decades to right some of these wrongs, we don't feel so bad.

One of the major (of the many) criticisms of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is that it ignored many of the great backing bands of the early stars of Rock and Roll.  The Hall may have liustened to this as they have done something progressive (for them) and have inducted six backing bands who helped shape the Rock and Roll landscape that we know.

The new inductees are The Famous Flames, who backed up James Brown.  As the pioneers of modern funk, many musical critics have lobbying for this induction for years.   It also includes the Crickets, who along with Buddy Holly were responsible for the some of the best Rock and Roll from the 1950's.  Gene Vincent's Blue Caps, Hank Ballard's Moonlighters and Bill Haley's Comets are also going to be inducted this spring.

For us though, we are very happy to see the Miracles inducted into the Hall of Fame.  Many musical critics were not happy when Smokey Robinson was inducted without them, and although it took well over twenty years to right this wrong, we are happy that it did occur.

Congratulations to all these wonderful musicians who are receiving this well deserved accolade.

Last modified on Thursday, 19 March 2015 18:47

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0 #7 Committee Chairman -0001-11-30 00:00
AH the Wailers..... that would be sweet. Perhpas in the future, we do a backing band list.
0 #6 Knuckles -0001-11-30 00:00
Agree about the Wailers, absolutely. If the entire Four Seasons group is in, why not the Belmonts? As for the Silver Bullet Band, I'll have to check to see how long term each member was. Yes, the music was great behind the vocals, Live Bullet proved that. But some lie needs to be drawn even if the HOF itself seems to ignore it.
0 #5 rockstar23 -0001-11-30 00:00
Aside from the E-street band, the big 2 that need to get in are The Wailers (Bob Marley) and The Belmonts (Dion). There's also the Silver Bullet Band to consider (Bob Seger).

Btw, props to the Hall for this move. The ommissions are long overdue for correction especially in the case of The Miracles. Hopefully this means the other 4 groups mentioned above can get in as well in the future.
0 #4 Knuckles -0001-11-30 00:00
Looking forward to the article, DDT. Especially the bit about Ballard. Maybe I've read too much Dave Marsh. His Rock Lists book is something I keep going back to.
I think these backing groups were voted in because of how synonymous to their frontmen mostly. It just seemed odd to have Buddy Holly without the Crickets, Bill Haley without the Comets, etc, even if Holly (rock's greatest early loss), Haley, etc did tower over their backing bands.
Besides the E Street Band and the JBs, were any significant backups missed that had not been covered by the sidemen category?
0 #3 Committee Chairman -0001-11-30 00:00
The whole process makes me wonder whether we should ranking some of these other backing bands now too...... another pandora' s box.....
0 #2 Darryl Tahirali -0001-11-30 00:00
Not to be a stickler, but . . . the Famous Flames were James Brown's backing outfit from the '50s and '60s, his R&B and soul period. They were certainly the seedbed for the funk of the '70s and beyond, but that truly "funky& quot; band was the JBs with Fred Wesley, Maceo Parker, Catfish Collins and his elastic-bass ist brother Bootsy, who later defected to the Parliafunkad elicment thing. And not to split too fine a hair, but the "Famous Flames" usually refers to Brown's backing singers and not the instrumental ists, typically labeled as the James Brown Band or James Brown Orchestra.

I agree about the Miracles. In fact, I explore that in my upcoming column, already written and submitted and awaiting publishing on the site. Of course, now that will sound stale. In the column, which is the first in a series of "audits " of the RnRHoF, I also argue that Hank Ballard doesn't quite make the Hall, so now the induction of the Midnighters only compounds the issue. Similarly, although I haven't gotten to Gene Vincent yet, I don't think (spoiler alert!) the Blue Caps deserve induction, either, no matter how much Cliff Gallup influenced Jeff Beck (who is another one whose solo career doesn't warrant inclusion).

But beyond the question of Hall legitimacy is the question of who exactly is considered to be in the band. Knuckles mentioned the E Street Band. Will that proposed induction include David Sancious, Mad Dog Lopez, et al, or does it start with the E Street Band from Born to Run on? (Speaking of funk, that band on The Wild, the Innocent was Springsteen& #39;s funkiest.)

Finally, seeing that Elvis's sublime backing group (Scotty Moore, Bill Black, DJ Fontana) was all inducted individually as sidemen, do they all get retroactivel y reorganized as a single unit?

The more the Hall progresses, the more it starts to look like "spaghe tti code." But, then, we wouldn't have much to complain about, would we?
0 #1 Knuckles -0001-11-30 00:00
I have long, long, long advocated the Miracles' ; induction. As great as Smokey was, the three other members, including Smokey's wife, were just as important as the members of the vocal Motown bands like the Temptations. They didn't induct just Diana Ross, the Supremes went in together. This was justice served in all six cases. It also means they've figured out how to get the rest of the E Street Band inducted.

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