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Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The big shock is Metallica not getting nominated in the band's first year of eligibility. It also shows moreso that the HOF isn't and never restricted nominees (and inductees) to *rock* acts- it's not just about rock, but the rock era, which has included many an influential and impactful genres.

Obviously, I'm pleased that Madge is a nominee out of the gate- though it's not surprising. She's unrivaled for pop music over the last 25 years, and what she has done in her music, stage shows, videos, etc. in terms of challenging gender, religious, sexual and social mores is unparalleled. Her importance is undeniable.

On a side note, in 2004, UK launched its own Hall of Fame, which is called "Music Hall of Fame." The 5 founding members were The Beatles, Elvis, Bob Marley, Madonna and U2.

The 2008 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Press Release

September 27, 2007
For Immediate Release:


(New York) -- The nominations for 2008 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame were announced today. The nine nominees are: Afrika Bambaataa, Beastie Boys, Chic, Leonard Cohen, The Dave Clark Five, Madonna, John Mellencamp, Donna Summer and The Ventures. Ballots with these nominees will be sent to over 500 voters who will choose the acts for inclusion into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for this year. Five new inductees will be honored at the annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on March 10, 2008 at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York.

To be eligible for nomination into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, an act must have released its first single or album at least 25 years prior to the year of nomination. This year's nominees had to release their first single no later than 1982.

Afrika Bambaataabegan DJing at block parties in the Bronx in 1977 with the help of Universal Zulu Nation, an organization he founded to help pull Bronx youth away from gangs. Bambaataa's stunning knowledge of obscure funk grooves and his turntable skills earned him the nickname "Master of Records." As his parties grew, so did his Zulu Nation "“ which soon encompassed the Bronx's finest rappers, break dancers and graffiti artists. In 1982, Bambaataa released the Kraftwerk-sampling hit single "Planet Rock" which spawned an entirely new genre of music: electro funk. In 1984, he teamed up with former Sex Pistol John Lydon for "World Destruction" one of the earliest examples of rap fusing with rock and roll.

The Beastie Boys began as a hardcore punk band in 1982, but soon jumped to the city's vibrant rap scene. Their Rick Rubin-produced album, Licensed to Ill, was a masterful collage of classic rock samples, pop culture references and bratty attitude. Its fifth single, "(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party)" became an MTV staple and the party anthem of the 1980s. The Beasties' follow up, 1989's Paul's Boutique was a critically loved masterwork of sampling. In the 1990s, they became elder statesmen of the genre, scoring monster hits ("Sabotage", "Intergalatic") while speaking out about social and political issues such as the Tibetan Freedom Concerts. In 2007, the Beasties released The Mix-Up, a post-punk instrumental album further showcasing their boundless originality.

Chic was a pioneering New York jazz-funk group led by Nile Rodgers on guitar, Bernard Edwards on bass and Tony Thompson on drums. Chic brought refined musicianship and rhythmic innovation to 1970s disco, and also laid the foundation for hip hop, with their song "Good Times" providing the music for the groundbreaking hit "Rapper's Delight." Chic created some of the disco era's classic songs such as "Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)" and "Le Freak." Rodgers and Edwards went on to write and produce some of the '80s' biggest pop songs for Madonna, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Diana Ross, Sister Sledge, and others.

With the 1966 release of In My Life by Judy Collins, containing Leonard Cohen's "Suzanne" and "Dress Rehearsal Rag," Cohen became a folk rock icon of the singer songwriter movement. Already an acclaimed poet and novelist in his native Canada, Cohen moved to New York in 1967 and released his classic album Songs of Leonard Cohen on Columbia Records. Its music launched Leonard Cohen into the highest and most influential echelon of songwriters. Cohen's elegiac work is widely used in film and covered by artists from Jeff Buckley to Bono to Bob Dylan to R.E.M. As Kurt Cobain said, "Give me a Leonard Cohen afterworld so I can sigh eternally."

One of the most successful British Invasion bands of the Sixties, The Dave Clark Five topped the UK charts in 1965 with their iconic pop song "Glad All Over." Thundering production set the DC5 apart. Their slick melodic sensibility masked their boom factor: The DC5 were the loudest group in the U.K. until the advent of The Who. Drummer, songwriter and manager Dave Clark provided a perfect foundation for Mike Smith's soulful vocals. Reaching the Top Forty 17 times in just three years, with more appearances on the Ed Sullivan show than the Beatles or the Rolling Stones, the DC5 were an enormous pop phenomenon before disbanding in 1970. The Dave Clark Five have sold more than 50 million records worldwide to date.

Doors opened wide for Madonna Louise Ciccone in 1982, after five years as a singer and dancer on New York City's competitive club circuit. She signed with Sire Records (her label for the next 14 years) where her idiosyncratic persona exploded onto turntables, dance floors and airwaves and captured the imagination of the first generation of MTV viewers. She went on to become the top female star of the 1980s with seven #1 hits, three #1 albums and seventeen top ten hits in that decade. In addition to molding her public image, Madonna is a meticulous studio craftsperson and completely uninhibited stage performer. From her first #1, 1984's "Like A Virgin" (produced by Nile Rogers of Chic) to her most recent two year Confessions campaign, Madonna remains one of the most ferociously original artists in music today.

Over the course of his career, John Mellencamp has become a symbol of the hopes, struggles and passions of America's heartland. As a songwriter, many of his efforts have transcended "hit" status ("Hurts So Good," "Pink Houses," "I Need A Lover") and have entered the cultural vernacular. Mellencamp's musical heart is in his ballads and rock numbers rooted in late 50s and early 60s rock and roll. His music describes the American experience; the hopes and fears of the common everyman. As co-founder of Farm Aid, Indiana's favorite son gives voice to issues that might otherwise be ignored, from our disappearing farmlands to the role of race and class in America.

Raised in the church, rooted in gospel, LaDonna Andrea Gaines would become Donna Summer, the undisputed "Queen of Disco." In 1975, "Love To Love You Baby"began a long-term association with Munich-based songwriters and producers Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte. Summer made history from 1979-1980 as the only artist ever to have three consecutive multi disc albums all hit #1: Live and More, Bad Girls and On The Radio. Her first U.S. recorded LP, the self-titled Donna Summer, produced by Quincy Jones in 1982 featured Bruce Springsteen and other notable rock contributors. "She Works Hard For The Money" kept Summer at the top of the charts in 1983, followed by the top 10 hit "This Time I Know It's Real" in 1989. Endless covers and sampling of her music proves that Summers' contribution remains compelling and classic.

From Seattle, The Ventures defined instrumental guitar rock in the 1960s. Their hits bookended the decade, from 1960's "Walk Don't Run" to 1969's "Hawaii Five-O." Nokie Edwards' twang-guitar and the crisp rhythm of Don Wilson, bassist Bob Bogle and drummer Mel Taylor gave every Ventures album their trademark bent note sound. Long admired by other bands like the Beatles (and especially George Harrison), Stephen Stills, Joe Walsh, Aerosmith, and others, The Ventures hit the Billboard chart nearly three dozen times in the 1960s. The transparent stereo mixes enabled guitarists to isolate and learn every riff, an idea that fueled 1965's essential instruction LP Play Guitar With The Ventures. Founders of surf rock, The Ventures inspired a classic line of Mosrite guitars and have maintained a flourishing touring and recording career for decades, especially in Europe and Japan.

Five new members will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The five inductees will be announced in January, 2008, and the induction ceremony will take place on March 10, 2008. All inductees are ultimately represented in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, in Cleveland, Ohio. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is a nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission both through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational programs.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Chic and the Ventures make for odd choices. It's also surprising that Cohen hasn't made it in yet.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Why do they always snub the Stooges and Big Star? Joy Divison? Influential bands for sure...

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

I'd vote Leonard Cohen, Madonna (I don't like her music but she's a figure), Chic, The Beastie Boys and The Ventures
Mellencamp is an under-Springsteen; I'm really sorry for Donna but I think Chic is the most important disco band;
And the Ventures may be a little forgotten now, but their influence as an instrumental group was huge (especially in Europe and Japan)

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

What's the use of caring? A rock and roll hall of fame has been a really stupid concept from the get-go and now has just become a joke. It would be a lot cooler if it were just a museum and maybe opened up a couple more of them in other places. The concept that a prestigious group gets to determine who are the best artists of all time is just insane and I really don't understand how a lot of these bands can go accept their nomination with a straight face.

It's Not Like...

the Grammy Awards, where a lot of nominees and winners are not acclaimed acts, and it- fhe the longest time- looked at safe, commercial acts. At least those (or the vast majority) who get into the HOF are acclaimed, important acts.

And, remember- it's 500+ prople worldwide who do the actual voting for the 5 who get inducted; the initial nomination list for this year came from a committe of 32.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Some artists that have a chance of being there, but haven't yet.

Brian Eno
Todd Rundgren
Burt Bacharach
Electric Light Orchestra
Carol Kaye - session bass player

It's seems phony how this hall of fame acts like they have run out of artists, that they have to be looking mainly at the 80s now.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Yes you're right John it has become a joke - when you look at some that have been inducted(Percy Sledge,Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers) and think of the ones that haven't - Dave Clark Five up for induction??? Surely there's loads of artists to put in before thinking of them - they're rubbish

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The museum itself is pretty cool, but the list of "hall of fame" artists is kind of a joke. Ricky Nelson? Detroit City Council Member Martha Reeves? The Rascals? Jackson Browne?

Like Anything...

it's not going to be 100% perfect- but, that's an individual thing, anyhow.

Sure there probably are others who haven't been inducted that could be- but nominating Beastie Boys and Madonna is not an indication that they've run out of people- they both are viable, deserving and important acts. Now, when someone like Barry Manilow is nominated and- worse- gets in, then we'll talk. :) (I actually can listen to his material and enjoy it for what it is- but HOF materail? No, no, no).

I'd think DC 5 could get in this year.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

What bugs me most about the Rock & Roll hall of fame is that it feels like it has to vote in artists that have more nagging fans than the other eligible artists. For example, the smartass historians that defend the blues & punk music, especially compared to others who defend music for what it is. If Grandmaster Flash or another hip-hop artist wouldn't have been inducted last year, then there would be some talking about discrimination. In the end it's not that much about music itself, but about getting in good with others like if it was high school. How hard is it to have voters that know most artists, & from there vote them in based on good music, & not relying on if they are popular enough or not. I understand that the whole criteria can make it tricky though when it comes to "rock & roll".

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

It's Not Like...

the Grammy Awards, where a lot of nominees and winners are not acclaimed acts,

why does an act have to be acclaimed to merit awards?

That's the Thing...

it's not just rock & roll- never has been. It's been rock, soul, R&B, pop, etc. from the start.

Once again, it's a body of 500+ voters who end up choosing the 5 who get inducted.

Believe me, there are nagging fans of every act out there, but that doesn't mean Celine Dion or Britney Spears (among others) are going to be considered.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Are you sure about that?

Pretty Sure...

those acts have done nothing that would fit in ith the Hall's criteria, nor have they been important artists.

Speaking of Dion, any big-voiced "diva" likely won't be considered, either- look at the one of the biggest voices of them all, Barbra Streisand. If the music isn't regarded that great in general, the act probably won't be inducted, or even a nominee. That's actually a common trend- we have these powerful voices (Barbra, Whitney, Celine, Mariah), yet they're rarely critical favorites. Aretha Franklin, though, overvcame that- but that's because she was given pretty good material, and her voice was just *that* powerful.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Barbra Streisand sang even better material than Aretha Franklin, & wider variety. It's just that it's soul vs. broadway that makes up the difference.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Yeah, you're probably right that Britney and Celine don't get in. The closest artists in there are Brenda Lee and Dusty Springfield. If Petula Clark and Streisand aren't in they certainly aren't. Kind of surprised Petula Clark isn't in though.


John Mellencamp
Dave Clark Five
The Ventures
Leonard Cohen


Henrik, break out the bubbly.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

I mean,come on people...
How much more diluted than the quality of the inductees get in the future? What next? Freddie & The Dreamers? The Cowsills?


has been eligible since, what, 1989?

Can't say I'm a fan, really, but there must be something about DC5 that's worthy- DC5 supporters, feel free to chime in here. :)

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The DC5 had a good run of hit singles in the first wave of the British Invasion, and thanks to drummer Clark himself they had the biggest beat of any of those bands. But I have to agree: Hall of Fame material? Not so much.

The Ventures are also an odd choice. If they belong, then the Shadows should be in there too. (But "Pipeline" by the Chantays cuts everything either of those bands ever recorded.)

The pool of nominees was so anemic this year that they probably should have relaxed the "five get in every year" rule. Even so, I'm kind of shocked that the Beasties missed the cut. Not that the HoF actually -means- anything.

USA Today's Ken Barnes on the Inductees...

Sure it means somethin',especially when the acts who get in are truly deserving. it ain't like Barry Manilow is in the HOF or anything like that! . Then, I think we could start slammin' it.

Black artists aren't represented this year, but have had little trouble in past years.

Rock Hall takes a walk on the white side

First, if you missed it, your new 2008 Rock and Roll Hall of Famers: the Dave Clark Five, Leonard Cohen, Madonna, John Mellencamp, The Ventures. Left out: Afrika Bambaata, Beastie Boys, Chic, Donna Summer.

As usual, the results are a mixed bag. It's interesting to see how the vote divides -- when Madonna is the closest you've got to R&B/hip-hop/disco/soul and the whole universe of black music, it's rather telling. (Yes, the DC5 and Mellencamp are clearly influenced by soul and R&B, but it's a secondary and secondhand part of their total musical DNA.) Still, there were a couple of nominees firmly on the hip-hop side who were, I think, rightly rejected.

Starting with the new inductees:

> DC5: Whether or not this is a payback for last year's rumored executive substitution of Grandmaster Flash for the British Invasion quintet, it's a deserved win. The DC5 tends to get lumped by historians with the lightweight, disposable wing of the 1964-66 British Invasion, but they're far from a Herman's Hermits teen dream or a Freddie & The Dreamers novelty act. Their taste in R&B and rock (they covered songs by The Contours, Link Wray, Chris Kenner and many more) was impeccable, their use of saxophone added a thick, driving texture not found in records by The Beatles and the Stones, and in Mike Smith they had a leather-lunged singer who could belt it out with the best. Original hits such as Any Way You Want It and Try Too Hard should be considered classics, and many of their later experimental B-sides and album tracks will surprise you with their inventiveness. (Disclaimer: I'm prejudiced here, having annotated and helped to assemble the History of the Dave Clark Five CD anthology in the '90s.)

> Leonard Cohen: As I said when the ballot was announced, I'm perfectly fine with the Canadian poet/singer/songwriters credentials, but he strikes me as the kind of artist who doesn't require immediate election. He's one of two who the voters should have bypassed this year, but his presence -- with the wealth of brilliant songs he wrote and sang -- enriches the Hall.

> Madonna: I had no doubts she'd be elected, and I have no doubts she merits inclusion. Distinctions between "rock" and pop have long since been erased in the Hall's roster as it's evolved, and you simply can't ignore the biggest solo star of the last quarter-century -- especially when so much of her music is truly great.

> John Mellencamp: About time. When Springsteen and Petty are in and Mellencamp's out, it's a gnawing imbalance, now corrected.

> The Ventures: A pioneering instrumental rock band, sure, but what suddenly makes them so nominatable and electable this year after they languished for decades after their initial eligibility. Should have been held over.

And now for the unelected:

> Afrika Bambaataa: Much as it's commendable to reward hip-hop's pioneers with a place in the Hall, Bambaataa's role was far too limited and his impact outside of New York far too minimal to deserve induction.

> Beastie Boys: This result was, frankly, a pleasant surprise for me. I thought they'd be elected and I just couldn't see it. Despite their artistic growth over the years, it rankled with me that they'd be among the first hip-hop inductees. Maybe they can be reconsidered after Run-DMC, LL Cool J and Public Enemy and a few other '80s stars get their due.

> Chic: The rankest injustice in the vote. Somebody needs to wake up the voters to the clearly evident facts that this was the most virtuosic band of players of the late '70s/early '80s, that their songwriting and production is in the class of the immortals, and that the music labeled disco in this case incorporates some of the toughest and tightest funk, R&B and rock extant. Their best songs are transcendent. This oversight needs to be corrected next year.

> Donna Summer: I've wrestled with this case, but have come around to thinking that she really has a substantial body of work, most of it co-written by her, and her artistic peaks (the Four Seasons of Love and Once Upon a Time albums and the revolutionary I Feel Love single) are as lofty as any in the era. She's a victim of lingering anti-disco prejudice, like Chic, and it's time for that to change.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Leonard Cohen may be as "rock'n'roll" as Vincent Van Gogh (arguably even less), but he's one hell of a lyricist, and he makes unsurpassed use of those approximately two-and-a-half notes that his voice spans. Good to see him included. I wonder if, in his usual perverseness, he'll refuse to pick up the prize?

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Hey next year, the AM forum should have their own voting for this. We can take the list of nominees and vote 5 in, trying to approximate the point system that the Hall of Fame uses.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

JR -

I loved your strong argument for Chic. Chic should have been voted in.

It Was...

Ken Barnes' argument, as it was his blog. :)

UK Hall of Fame

This is from the UK Music Hall of Fame ceremony (where Madge was one of 5 Founding Members selected)- can see it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovaNggm9Rp0

One of the inductors: "Bigger balls than any man I know!" haha so true.

And from M's speech:

"Just because you're famous doesn't mean you have something to say"- AMEN, sistah.

"I've been able to find my voice- not just to sing with, but to ask questions with, to challenge with, to explore with, to explode with, to be in service with, to create with, to laugh with and to cry with. I am grateful that my voice has given other people a voice, and Im grateful for those who have gone before me, who have used their voice in a revolutionary way, defying convention and sometimes even defying gravity... I'm also grateful to the people who have stuck their necks out and taken a few slaps... I've taken a few slaps myself, and I must say, I don't regret it a bit. In fact, I am grateful for the slaps.... I'm grateful that I had something to say that provoked them. But most of all I'm grateful that people were listening... and that people still are listening."

AWESOME speech. What it should be all about (in addition to making great, memorable music). Not all Hall of Famers encompass that, but kudos to those who shook up the system and made soem great memorable music.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The R&R Hall of Fame is just like the Grammies: They always go with the safest choice.

I Think Not...

The Grannies have a history of going with safe, non-threatening, popular nominees/winners. Seriously- check out the history of nominees/winners (esp. pre-1997 or so- but then you had Backstreet Boys up for Album of the Year in 2000/2001- LOL!, and then you'll see how untrue that is.

Not saying the HOF is perfect, but it's FAR more successful in its goals than NARAS- unless NARAS' goal isn't to reflect the best in music- if it is, VERY unsuccessful in its history.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Not sure if you guys heard but the inductees are:

John Mellencamp
Leonard Cohen
The Ventures
The Dave Clark Five


They should just let loose and make Weird Al musician of the millenium.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Madonna was inducted, of course JR already posted it.

Re: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

Yes! Cohen, maybe the r&r hof has some credibility left afterall