Rock and Roll (567)

Music.  It has the ability to bring people together.  It can stir up hidden emotions.  It can cause you to get up and physically move.  It can help you through your work day.  It separates generations.  We could describe it for page after page in terms both specific and vague but music simply means different things to different people.  Likely, many of these things were on the mind of the builders of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, a tribute to those who built up the genre of Rock and Roll.

Their intentions certainly seemed clear enough.  Their website states that “The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honors the legendary performers, producers, songwriters, disc jockeys and others who have made rock and roll the force that it is in our culture”.  For our purposes, we are going to focus on the performer section of the Hall.  That being said, the first rule of eligibility is very simple.  Once an artist has gone twenty five years after the release of their first record, they become eligible.  After that it becomes a little murky.  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame states that “criteria include the influence and significance of the artists’ contributions to the development and perpetuation of rock and roll”.  Influence and significance is certainly open to interpretation.  For that matter, so is Rock and Roll.  When Bill Haley sang Rock around the Clock over sixty years ago was he describing a sound, a look or maybe just an attitude?  Did the songwriters just like the word “rock”?  The origin of Rock music is so difficult to pinpoint its subsequent evolution is just as equally hard to chart.

With these vague parameters we at Not in Hall of Fame put our own committee together and came up with the top 250 artists whom we feel deserve consideration for enshrinement in Cleveland.  Are we right?  Are we wrong?   We know two things for sure; the first is that while compiling this list we felt we could make a viable case for multiple artists to be in our number one slot, the second was that it was a blast coming up with it.  Let us know what you think and based on who gets inducted, who becomes newly eligible, your opinions and how our own perceptions change, we will see how we rank them in the following year.    

Until then, Keep on Rockin’ in the Free World!

Sincerely,

 

The Not in Hall of Fame Rock and Roll Committee.

Although we always seemed to be aware of them, even we were surprised just how many subgenres of Rock and Roll there seems to be. In the case of the Ska Revival genre we wonder if it the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will see fit to grant them an inductee. If so, our bet would be on the…
It is difficult to argue that Fleetwood Mac should not be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but what of their breakout star, Stevie Nicks? Certainly she had a successful solo career and her look was copied enough, but it is also easy to counter that her best work was in the band that first made her a…
With the music world looking for Alternative superstars, the table was set for the Offspring’s brand of Punk, Pop and Metal to be a hit. They came across like overnight sensations (they weren’t) and their 1994 album, Smash, remains the best selling independent album in history. They would become known for their sarcastic and fun lyrics and always rooted their…
Critically despised? Check! Played very little today on Classic Rock stations? Check! Sold out arenas in their day? Check! Sold a lot of platinum records? Check! Confused? Meet the Hard Rock enigma known as Grand Funk Railroad.
In other entries on this list, a debate will emerge as to whether one album makes a career. In the case of My Bloody Valentine, there was at least two full length albums recorded, but boy were they good ones!
It has been said that the Velvet Underground was the Ground Zero for Alternative music. There are levels of truths to that and the disciples they spawned via vinyl were incalculable. Jonathan Richman was a man who was greatly influenced by the Velvets, so much so, it could be argued that he literally picked up where they left off.
There are some bands that seem poised to break through the stratosphere but for whatever reason just can’t. The Cult seems to be one of those bands that while although they were very successful; they just seemed to fall short of what many thought they could have been.
If you excuse the pun, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony was easily the most melodic of the big name rap stars of the Mid-90s, which allowed the Gangsta Rap influenced group to combine that with pop sensibilities.  The result was number one albums and a rewriting of what deep Hip Hop could sound like.  This allowed this group to be a unique combination…
Debating the merits of someone who is already in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with another group is commonplace here. Debating the merits of someone who eclipsed her former act in terms of success and notoriety though not necessarily musically is a little new for us. We can’t help but feel that Tina Turner falls in to that…
Anyone taking a look throughout this list will see the vast amount of artists from the United Kingdom. Primal Scream is another such artist, but if anyone seemed to represent the last twenty years of British music better than they did, we would like to know who that might be.
As one of the most successful group of the 90’s, TLC had a large string of hits that combined Hip Hop, Pop and other forms of Dance music.  As successful as they were, they were equally controversial as they were involved in as much personal turmoil as any Male Hip Hop figure of the decade.  Behind all that lay a threesome…
Is it possible for a group that has stated that they hate Rock music to ever be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? This is the question we pose when discussing the Pet Shop Boys, the British Dance music duo who may be the most critically acclaimed of their genre.
In most circles, Jazz is one of the most respected styles of music, so it would stand to reason that a fusion of Jazz and Rock would yield respect and success in the industry. In the case of Blood, Sweat & Tears it did not quite work out that way.
Although Eric B. & Rakim were far from the first Rap stars of note, they may have done more to further the genre of Hip Hop than anyone else on the latter half of the 1980’s. With unequalled chemistry, the duo comprised of Eric B.’s solid DJ skills and the leading MC of his time, Rakim. This was the Hip…
Each year during the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nomination process only a handful of artists are selected. Because of this, many artists only have to be nominated once or maybe twice before they get inducted. Chuck Willis was nominated five consecutive years from 1986 and 1990 yet never got inducted. Willis has not been nominated since.
A superstar in the Adult Alternative world, Sarah McLachlan’s atmospheric Pop-Folk blend garnered her many friends worldwide. Her song writing and vocal skills made her very successful on both the critical and commercial front. It can be argued that her greatest musical contribution was the creation of Lilith Fair, which celebrated the female songwriter and helped launch a few careers…
Maybe the Eagle with the highest “Rock credibility”, Joe Walsh was a brilliant guitar player with an under appreciated sense of introspection with his music. As such, he was the most relatable of the Eagles and an informal poll of Eagles fans would likely result in Joe Walsh being the favorite. Already in as a member of the Eagles, it…
Fans of Popular music often try to emulate the singing styles of their favorite performers. Kate Bush had legions of fans, but many of them probably never tried to sing like her. They knew it couldn’t be done.
What if your greatest hit was barely a reflection of your body of work? This could be the case for Los Lobos, whose cover of La Bamba was by far their largest hit, but was a poor representation of what this band was really about.
We did not have an internal debate as to whether Johnny Ace should be inducted.We agreed that he should but as the bulk of his work predated the Rock and Roll explosion we are not sure if he is a Roots and Influences candidate instead.