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HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Welcome to the discussion thread for the HOA’s second year, 1961. To start, once again, here are the top 50 candidates by AM ranking:


Only releases through December 31, 1960 included.

Note that the 1960 inductees have been removed from the list.

Beginning in this list, I’ve indicated releases from the year “just past” with an asterisk. This should make it easy to see which artists now have a 1960 album or song in their top six.

1. MILES DAVIS (17.92)
ALBUMS: Birth of the Cool (325); Miles Ahead (789); Milestones (829); Porgy & Bess (546); Kind of Blue (37); Sketches of Spain (373)*.
SONG: So What (664).

2. FRANK SINATRA (18.40)
ALBUMS: In the Wee Small Hours (224); Songs for Swingin’ Lovers (210); A Swingin’ Affair (1178); Come Fly with Me (839); Sings for Only the Lonely (625); Come Dance With Me! (1328)
SONGS: All or Nothing at All (2875); I’ve Got the World on a String (2720); When Your Lover Has Gone (2563); I’ve Got You Under My Skin (933); One for My Baby (1388).

ALBUMS: Here’s Little Richard (382); Little Richard Vol. 2 (2958).
SONGS: Tutti Frutti (28); Long Tall Sally (228); Rip It Up (1496); Lucille (1251); Keep a Knockin’ (2039); Good Golly Miss Molly (245).

ALBUMS: Genius of Modern Music, Vol. 1 (458); Genius of Modern Music, Vol. 2 (714); Brilliant Corners (429); Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane (733); Monk’s Music (1014); Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers with Thelonious Monk (1528).
SONG: Round Midnight (342).

5. RAY CHARLES (18.66)
ALBUMS: Ray Charles at Newport (1126); The Genius of Ray Charles (696); Ray Charles in Person (1754)*.
SONGS: I’ve Got a Woman (617); Hallelujah, I Love Her So (2347); Lonely Avenue (1004); (The Night Time Is) The Right Time (2442); What’d I Say (27); Georgia on My Mind (322)*.

ALBUMS: Jazz at Massey Hall (514); Pithecanthropus Erectus (748); Blues and Roots (782); Mingus Ah Um (384); Mingus at Antibes (1364)*; Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus (935)*.
SONGS: none.

ALBUMS: The Everly Brothers (1618); Songs Our Daddy Taught Us (1722); It’s Everly Time (2551)*.
SONGS: Bye Bye Love (144); Wake Up Little Susie (420); All I Have to Do Is Dream (171); Bird Dog (2183); Cathy’s Clown (260)*.

8. SONNY ROLLINS (19.01)
ALBUMS: Tenor Madness (1104); Saxophone Colossus (370); Way Out West (891); Night at the Village Vanguard, Vol. 1 (1021); Night at the Village Vanguard, Vol. 2 (1150); Freedom Suite (1407).
SONG: St. Thomas (2551).

ALBUMS: Ellington Uptown (2442); Ellington at Newport (385); Such Sweet Thunder (1917); Indigos (1864); Side by Side (1823); Anatomy of a Murder (2692).
SONGS: Black and Tan Fantasy (1758); Mood Indigo (691); Take the “A” Train (431); Black, Brown and Beige (1988); In a Sentimental Mood (1531); Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue (1813).

ALBUMS: Sings the Cole Porter Songbook, Vol. 1 (617); Sings the Rodgers and Hart Songbook, Vol. 1 (888); Ella and Louis (1370); Porgy and Bess (1373); Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook, Vol. 1 (1319); Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Songbook (875).
SONG: A-Tisket, A-Tasket (1097).

11. MUDDY WATERS (19.06)
ALBUMS: Muddy Waters at Newport (1960)*.
SONGS: I Can’t Be Satisfied (2132); Rollin’ Stone (773); Hoochie Coochie Man (282); Mannish Boy (240); Got My Mojo Working (588).

12. BO DIDDLEY (19.15)
ALBUMS: Bo Diddley (816); Go Bo Diddley (1349).
SONGS: Bo Diddley (177); I’m a Man (723); Who Do You Love (317).

13. JERRY LEE LEWIS (19.23)
ALBUM: Jerry Lee Lewis (1341)
SONGS: Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On (64); Great Balls of Fire (124).

14. COUNT BASIE (19.25)
ALBUMS: Count Basie Swings, Joe Williams Sings (1310); April in Paris (1000); At Newport (1447); The Atomic Mr. Basie (657).
SONGS: One O’Clock Jump (865); Lester Leaps In (2182); April in Paris (1447).

15. JOHN COLTRANE (19.28)
ALBUMS: Blue Train (613); Cattin’ with Coltrane and Quinichette (2903); Soultrane/John Coltrane 2-LP (1844); Giant Steps (305); Coltrane Jazz (1456)*.
SONGS: none.

ALBUMS: Bird & Diz (1644); Jazz at Massey Hall (514); Dizzy Gillespie with Roy Eldridge (1572); Groovin’ High (1547); Birk’s Works (2360); At Newport (2130).
SONGS: Groovin’ High (2672); A Night in Tunisia (2463); Manteca (1168).

17. BILLIE HOLIDAY (19.32)
ALBUM: Lady in Satin (639)
SONGS: Strange Fruit (111); God Bless the Child (432).

18. FATS DOMINO (19.36)
ALBUMS: Rock and Rollin’ with Fats Domino (1416); This Is Fats Domino! (2457); The Fabulous Mr. D (2295).
SONGS: Ain’t That a Shame (600); Blueberry Hill (213); Blue Monday (1803); I’m Walkin’ (2168); Walking to New Orleans (1921)*.

19. JOHNNY CASH (19.37)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Folsom Prison Blues (135); I Walk the Line (93); I Still Miss Someone (2109).

ALBUMS: Something Else!!! (1861); The Shape of Jazz to Come (315); Change of the Century (762)*.
SONGS: none.

ALBUMS: Plays W.C. Handy (1036); Ella and Louis (1370); Ella and Louis Again (2967); Porgy and Bess (1373).
SONG: West End Blues (343).

22. CHARLIE PARKER (19.48)
ALBUMS: Charlie Parker with Strings (1735); Bird & Diz (1644); Jazz at Massey Hall (514).
SONGS: Koko (768); Ornithology (2456).

23. HOWLIN’ WOLF (19.49)
ALBUM: Moanin’ in the Moonlight (551).
SONG: Smokestack Lightnin’ (367); Wang Dang Doodle (2561)*; Back Door Man (2460)*; Spoonful (1247)*.

24. ART BLAKEY (19.51)
ALBUMS: A Night at Birdland Vol. 1 (1236); A Night at Birdland Vol. 2 (2296); Moanin’ (781); Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers with Thelonious Monk (1528); A Night in Tunisia (1787)*.
SONGS: none.

25. BUD POWELL (19.52)
ALBUMS: The Amazing Bud Powell Vol. 1 (792); Jazz at Massey Hall (514); The Amazing Bud Powell Vol. 2 (2905).
SONG: Un Poco Loco (1616).

26. WOODY GUTHRIE (19.52)
ALBUM: Dust Bowl Ballads (607).
SONG: This Land Is Your Land (163).

ALBUM: Rock Around the Clock (2042).
SONG: (We’re Gonna) Rock Around the Clock (45).

28. ROBERT JOHNSON (19.55)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Come on in My Kitchen (2338); Cross Road Blues (226); Sweet Home Chicago (2238); Terraplane Blues (2280); Hellhound on My Trail (843); Love in Vain (1446).

29. DAVE BRUBECK (19.56)
ALBUMS: Jazz Goes to College (2843); Time Out (324).
SONG: Take Five (730).

30. THE DRIFTERS (19.58)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Money Honey (921); There Goes My Baby (269); Save the Last Dance for Me (670)*.

31. EDDIE COCHRAN (19.59)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Summertime Blues (79); C’mon Everybody (1210).

32. BIG JOE TURNER (19.60)
ALBUM: The Boss of the Blues (1094).
SONG: Shake, Rattle and Roll (151).

33. THE SHIRELLES (19.61)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Dedicated to the One I Love (1784); Tonight’s the Night (1815)*; Will You Love Me Tomorrow (98)*.

34. BENNY GOODMAN (19.61)
ALBUM: The Famous 1938 Carnegie Hall Concert (513).
SONGS: Sing, Sing, Sing (724); Solo Flight (2007).

35. RITCHIE VALENS (19.63)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Donna (788); La Bamba (152).

36. GENE VINCENT (19.64)
ALBUM: Gene Vincent and His Blue Caps (1743).
SONG: Be Bop a Lula (125).

37. CARL PERKINS (19.65)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Blue Suede Shoes (75); Honey Don’t (2859).

38. THE COASTERS (19.65)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Searchin’ (1570); Young Blood (979); Yakety Yak (262).

39. SAM COOKE (19.66)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: You Send Me (189); Wonderful World (902)*.

40. SARAH VAUGHAN (19.66)
ALBUMS: Images/Swingin’ Easy (1298); Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown (743); In the Land of Hifi (2239).
SONGS: none.

41. THE PLATTERS (19.67)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: The Great Pretender (329); Only You (And You Alone) (750); Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (1984).

42. PATSY CLINE (19.67)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Walkin’ After Midnight (1407); Crazy (146)*.

43. BOBBY BLAND (19.69)
ALBUM: Two Steps from the Blues (399)*.
SONG: Further Up the Road (2002).

ALBUM: Johnny Burnette and the Rock ‘n’ Roll Trio (637).
SONG: The Train Kept A-Rollin’ (874).

45. CLIFFORD BROWN (19.70)
ALBUMS: Daahoud/Clifford Brown & Max Roach (1229); Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown (743); Study in Brown (1979); At Basin Street (2209).

46. JACKIE WILSON (19.71)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Reet Petite (The Finest Girl You Ever Want to Meet) (539); Lonely Teardrops (479).

ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Why Do Fools Fall in Love (161); I’m Not a Juvenile Delinquent (2191).

48. LLOYD PRICE (19.72)
ALBUMS: none.
SONGS: Lawdy Miss Clawdy (371); Stagger Lee (1061); Personality (2416); I’m Gonna Get Married (2924).

49. ROY ORBISON (19.73)
ALBUMS: none.
SONG: Only the Lonely (139)*.

50. MAX ROACH (19.74)
ALBUMS: Daahoud/Clifford Brown & Max Roach (1229); Study in Brown (1979); At Basin Street (2209); Max Roach Plus Four (2438); We Insist! Freedom Now Suite (1288)*.


MOVING UP: Charles Mingus, The Everly Brothers, Muddy Waters, John Coltrane, Fats Domino, Ornette Coleman, Howlin’ Wolf; Art Blakey, The Drifters.

(“Moving Up” artists, by the way, are the ones whose position would have improved even if last year’s inductees were still on the list. Obviously, Miles moved up to #1, but he wouldn’t have if Elvis were still here, so he’s not in this category.)

NEW TO THE LIST: The Shirelles, Sam Cooke, Patsy Cline, Bobby Bland, Roy Orbison, Max Roach.

FELL OFF THE LIST: The Carter Family, Leadbelly.

(But you can still vote for them! I think Leadbelly stands a fighting chance of getting in eventually…I’m less sure about the Carters, although they will probably show up on my ballot at some point.)

BUBBLING UNDER: Modern Jazz Quartet, Bing Crosby, Jimmie Rodgers, James Brown, Chubby Checker.


Hokay…we will now have one week of spirited discussion until voting begins on July 15.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Paul, you had asked about newly eligible artists...I hope the "New to the List" category above is helpful to you. Most of those artists had released music prior to 1960, of course.

It's beyond the scope of what I can do easily to list every important artist who released their first record in a given year, but I'll try to note some of the big ones. The early sixties, as most of you know, were a very fallow period in pop history (which is one reason why I chose 1960 as a starting date, since very few new artists are gumming up the works at this time).

1960 rookies who leap to mind are Chubby Checker, Joan Baez, and Bob Newhart...but I can't really see any of them garnering much support for the Hall.

(There is a group of four English teenagers who are making some very primitive live recordings in Hamburg this year. Those songs won't be officially released for forty years, but we might want to keep an eye on those guys...)

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

So I'm still trying to think about who to move up into the two spots that have been vacated by Berry and Holly. I am not sure that certain indivduals that I might be inclined to vote on are ready yet: Coltrane, Cash, Orbison have some important releases yet to come. I think perhaps Sinatra has to take one of the spots at this point, but he could get overtaken soon. Maybe the Platters? Or maybe it's time to give up my Billie Holiday player-hating.

I'm going to argue for my left field pick: Django Reinhardt. Currently ranked 1822 on AM (based upon a single song) and only destined to fall further. But if you're looking for a guitar god, look no further. I'm not fully conversant with all of his work (I don't even know how much of it got recorded), but his playing (particularly when paired with Stephane Grapelli) floats and darts like a kite. I'm curious to know how many on the forum know his work.

Also... I am definitely feeling like the songwriters need to be given love on the backstage voting. No doubt, Sam Philips is deserving. But wouldn't you say the Great American Songbook writers are deserving? I went with Porter and Gershwin. I thought whoever voted for Carmichael was using his or her noggin. Berlin would also be worthy. Also, this begs the question, can we vote for a songwriting team as a single backstage vote? (E.g., Holland-Dozier-Holland.) And when it comes time, where does Phil Spector get put, main hall or backstage? Some might say he belongs behind bars, but I'm sure there will be a lot of unsavory characters in the Hall before we're through.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I'll probably add the Everlys to my nominations but that's probably it. We only have to nominate five right?

Little Richard deserved to be a first ballot entry.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread


What you did is perfect.


Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

My "speechifying" will be on behalf of Harry Smith as a potential nominee for the backstage wing. Read about him here: Harry Smith bio.

I really don't have anything to add to that, other than saying that those with any interest in roots music should get the anthology.

Also, Thelonious Monk is great.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

If Miles wasn't a shoo-in before, he certainly is now in 1961 with Sketches of Spain under his belt. A richly colored masterpiece that deserves its place in the hall of classic jazz albums. Gil Evans deserves a boatload of credit (hmmm... looks like I might have my first backstage vote).

I'm also glad to see Robert Johnson get the support, but I'll be honest, this idea of idealism vs. realism in HoA is still kinda lost on me. I understand the concept, but I'm not sure how it's reasonable to reconcile a given artist's body of work up to a certain point of time with the amount of influence he/she/they had. In other words, we're supposed to believe that Robert Johnson's work wasn't great until Mick and Keef showed up? And if that's the case, when exactly would Nick Drake make it into HoA? (though maybe it's a moot point).

And Schwah... nicely done with Django and Berlin. Any guitarist worth his salt knows about Django, and I was actually considering Irving for my first ballot, but for some reason, left him off. I feel a bit embarassed about it now actually. After all, popular music started with TPA, and I'm not sure if anyone represents that period better than Berlin.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

In reverse order:

Anthony, I agree with you about Miles and Robert Johnson; I’m pretty sure that both will leap onto my ballot this year (though still behind Ellington). And I think Nick Drake has a reasonable chance of making the HOA; he did very well in Survivor, and there’s a stretch in the mid-1970’s where the competition gets pretty weak…

Paul, GREAT call on Harry Smith. Totally forgot about him.

John, obviously I agree about Little Richard, but he looks to be in pretty good shape for 1961 or 1962. Oh, and you have to have ten artists on your ballot, but you only have to explain the top five.

Schwah, I’m glad you gave me a chance to talk about Gershwin, Hoagy, et al. My original plan was just to declare that those guys are eligible for the main wing (even if they don’t have a ghost of a chance of getting elected), since they’re listed as “artists” on AM. But, reasonably, if it’s the “backstage” wing, then people who are songwriters but not performers should be eligible for it. Gershwin (or Cole Porter or Irving Berlin) do not really belong in the same category as Bing Crosby or even Cab Calloway.

(Hoagy Carmichael, though? I think his main appeal is as a performer. I recently watched the 1946 movie The Best Years of Our Lives, and even though he’s only onscreen for about three minutes, Hoagy’s easily the best thing in the picture. My point is that he deserves all the acclaim in the world for his charisma, style, and performing. His songwriting? I’m not so sure…)


As long as we’re throwing “backstage” names out there, let me offer up two more. In keeping with my championing of Alan Freed, these are both what used to be called broadcast personalities:

ED SULLIVAN. Best known now, of course, for the Beatles’ appearances on his show in 1964. But in the fifties, he had two celebrated—and fractious—appearances on his show by Elvis Presley and Bo Diddley. Possessed of no charisma and a startling resemblance to Richard Nixon, Ed might be a case study for being in the right place at the right time. But, in the pre-Dick Clark era, he provided the main televised forum for introducing rock & roll (plus an endless series of vaudeville acts) to the great American public.

DEWEY PHILLIPS. He hung his hat in Memphis, but he’s no relation to Sam. He was a DJ, and although his radio show wasn’t as important nationally as Freed’s, it was earlier (starting in 1949) in broadcasting a combination of R&B and country music to a racially mixed audience. Dewey’s show on WHBQ was crucial in creating the musical ferment in Memphis from which Sun Records arose. His broadcasts were a demented cornucopia of corny jokes, hollerin', non sequiturs, and of course music (sometimes with ol' Dewey singin' along). Oh, and he was the first guy to broadcast a certain single, “That’s All Right (Mama)” b/w “Blue Moon of Kentucky.”

I don’t think I’d vote for either of them over Lieber/Stoller or even Harry Smith, but I thought I’d throw ‘em in the mix.

(Man, I just can’t shut up today, can I?)

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

No complaints outta me, schleuse. Your writing is half the reason why I come here.

A few interesting tidbits...

- within a day or so of "That's All Right" being recorded, Dewey Phillips had a copy of it in his hands and liked it so much that he played it 30 times in one night.

- Alan Freed once said "the run-of-the-mill, country-affected, pop-hit sound didn't do anything for him." (Although, this comment was made during his depressed, heavy-drinking days.)

And while we're talking early deejays, might as well mention Bob "Wolfman Jack" Smith (Shreveport) and Clarence "Poppa Stoppa" Hammon out of New Orleans. Not as notable as the above two, but cogs in the wheel nonetheless (and great radio names too!)

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

great call on harry smith. someone else also mentioned alan lomax. both are key

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Schleuse, I think you should notate first ballot entries when moving them to the hall. To me that separates the best from the rest.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Actually now that I think about it, it doesn't make sense in this competition. Disregard that last post.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Another person worthy of backstage consideration is John Hammond. Again, read his bio for the details

He played a key role in the careers of a varied and long list of acclaimed musicians.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I guess an Alan/John Lomax bill makes sense. John (the father) was the one who started the Library of Congress' folk department, and discovered Leadbelly at Angola State Prison Farm in 1933

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

it's quiet in here.

any fans of the louvin brothers? i'm considering putting them on my ballot this round, maybe next...

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I had a real fling with the Louvin Brothers but it didn't last. I still like them pretty well, but I'm surprised with the great extent of their popularity within the old-school country set.

I think I have a hard time relating to a lot of their lyrical subjects.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

For my part I'll stop that "realistic" vote as i see it doesn't catch.
So I guess some bluesmen will make their appearance next week : Robert Johnson for sure, Muddy Waters too.
And probably Ray Charles too, because apart from "Modern sounds in C&W" in '62 his ABC years were not very intersting in terms of musical innovation

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

The Louvin Brothers...man, I haven't heard them in about 15 years.

I guess there are two questions with them. One is: where do you put them among country artists? I can't see voting for them ahead of Jimmie Rodgers, the Carter Family, Bob Wills, and Bill Monroe. We also have Patsy Cline to consider now, and soon we'll have Marty Robbins and Buck Owens. Oh, and Johnny Cash. Actually, the Louvins had a lot in common with Cash--gospel background, some upbeat hits, at least one song about a murder, self-destructive tendencies--and might have been able to fill Cash's ecological niche in 50's music...except that they were too old. Anyway, that's stiff competition, and I assume we're not going to induct the entire country pantheon.

The other question has to do with influence. The Louvins were a major influence on the Everly Brothers and Gram Parsons, and I think that might be their strongest argument. It's not enough for me to put them on my ballot (or, to be honest, bubbling under my ballot) at this point, but I'll keep a weather eye on them.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I agree with schleuse about the Louvin Bros

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I'm sorry to say that I'm not gonna vote in this game. Not regularly anyway. This game is too good to just throw in a commentary line about the artists I already have in my collection. And I have to discipline myself to focus on the coming AM update rather than joining all the fun activities here...

However, I will read your posts, listen to Youtube clips, etc., so keep up the good work everyone!

But while I'm writing, I have to name one favorite artist that I don't think has been mentioned before: Edith Piaf

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I'll probably push The Shirelles up the list, and Patsy Cline will also be there. I'm not sure who'll take the next spots. Haven't really thought about this the last days.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I don't see how you can not put Miles Davis in.

Though there probably won't be much to interest me in this game until we get into the late 60s.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I forgot that I was going to say that I was going to add Miles this time. I was waiting for Sketches of Spain.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Someone please vote for Paranthropus Boisei.


- They were the very first rock band. As such, they predated everyone you've mentioned. Their influence is simply inestimable.

- While they had several lineup changes, so did The Carter Family, and voting for The Carter Family is absolutely okay, and so voting for Paranthropus, the finest rock band ever, is very much okay itself.

- With 1959 having been the year of their truly defining output, it doesn't even make sense to wait in voting them. Sure, you could wait until 1969 if you like, but I say that year was just the icing on the cake.

- Reissues of their songs may be hard to find nowadays, but trust me, I was there when they were big. It was incredible.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Some random Friday evening thoughts about some artists in this election’s Top 50 who haven’t gotten much discussion…

8. SONNY ROLLINS. He’s in the top ten right now, and I know zip about him. Anybody?

18. FATS DOMINO. The Fat Man got a few votes in 1960, but I think we may be underrating him. I read somewhere that, due to his influence, triplets became a widely-understood sign of “rock & roll” for a while in the fifties.

I think it’s too early yet for either of these guys (although I doubt Coleman will ever show up on my ballot). I seem to recall that Henrik is particularly fond of Howlin’ Wolf…would the maestro possibly give us a testimony?

30. THE DRIFTERS. More a legend than a band. But “Money Honey” is ranked far too low.

31. EDDIE COCHRAN. His meager recorded output knocks his ranking far lower than his actual talent and influence. He’s a dark horse for me.

35. RITCHIE VALENS. I doubt we’ll be inducting him, but, like Buddy Holly (and for precisely—and I mean precisely—the same reason), he’ll never get any higher than this. Anybody want to rise to his defense?.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Sonny Rollins was a great jazz man, no doubt, but I don't think this site is a reliable indicator of jazz acclaim. The No. 8 ranking doesn't mean much.

I think a very small minority of jazz critics would rate him over Duke Ellington, Count Basie, John Coltrane thru 1961, Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, or Bud Powell, as the site does. Makes no sense.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Speaking of jazz, it's time to start voting for John Coltrane.

By 1961 he had already released three of his four great albums (Blue Train, Giant Steps, and My Favorite Things) and done most of his great playing with Miles.

I'm putting both Coltrane and Davis on my ballot. I'm sure Miles will sneak in, but not quite as confident about Coltrane.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

On Ritchie Valens...

Obviously, we all know that he died in the same plane crash that claimed Buddy Holly, and his career basically lasted from May '58 (when Bob Keane discovered him) to Feb '59 (his death). What is that, ten months and change? Still, in that time he became the first Chicano rock n' roll star -- bringing Mexican rhythms and style into rock (the most notable example being "La Bamba"). Not bad for a 17 year-old kid.

Like Holly, he's definitely a case of "what could've been?", but I don't think his resume is enough to get on my ballot. But here's something to chew on... Dylan often credited the Animals for creating the alloy that would give rise to folk rock, but maybe he should've looked to the earlier blueprint of Valens and "La Bamba". Something for the Dylanites to think about anyway.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Thinking of Richie Valens, a question occurred to me: Has any artist accomplished enough while still a teenager to get enshrined?

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I think probably not, but Michael Jackson may have done enough as a pre-teen to get into the HOA. I know that I value his Jackson 5 material more than his solo material.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Compared with your garden-variety rock fan, I think I have a fair amount of knowledge when it comes to jazz. But that said, I know shit-all about Sonny Rollins. Paul, you? (Might be high time to check him out.)

Ornette Coleman... I know a bit more about (which is to say, I at least own one of his records). "The Shape of Jazz" -- a pioneering album, but it was a difficult listen for someone like me who needs a little bit of form and structure in their jazz. I haven't pulled it off the shelf since.

And Eddie Cochran, like Gene Vincent, was another would-be Elvis; killed at 21 in a car accident. Had more or less the same career trajectory as Ritchie Valens, which means he's likely not getting my vote either. ("Summertime Blues" is a lot cooler than "La Bamba" though.)

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

"I think probably not, but Michael Jackson may have done enough as a pre-teen to get into the HOA. I know that I value his Jackson 5 material more than his solo material."

How many of you are judging solo artists entire careers rather than just their solo work? That's against the games rules, right?

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

On Sonny Rollins I've got Saxophone Colossus, which is his most acclaimed album, and I have his ablum with Monk. Both are good but do not inspire me the way Miles and Coltrane do. I've never made a study of Sonny Rollins work.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread


I'm judging the person by the person's work and the band by the band's work.

When I vote for Gram Parsons it will be for what Gram Parsons did as a member of the International Submarine Band, The Byrds, The Flying Burrito Brothers, and as a solo act. He should get credit for what he did.

Michael Jackson should get credit for all that Michael Jackson has done.

Coltrane should get credit for his work in the Miles Davis Quintet. If not, then Miles Davis shouldn't either, and the "Miles Davis Quintet" should be voted separately from Miles as a solo artist. Which would be pretty ridiculous.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I'm inclined to agree with you Paul, but I do the exact opposite for the artists poll.

It's an interesting problem..

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

If I did that then I'd have the Beatles #1, Paul McCartney #2, John Lennon #3 and Harrison and Ringo somewhere in the top 100. I'd have Robert Pollard in my top 100 even though I don't really like his solo work. Same goes for all the individual members of the Wu-Tang. I'm not about to do that. I'd even be for a rule that prevents that.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

I thought I was posting in the artist poll... I still think I'll use the same rule here though.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

Go after the most common delineation of entities for every case in part.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

So if someone's career is fractionary, take them as a whole (Coltrane, Parsons). If it's well delineated, take the larger entities (The Beatles, Wu-Tang Clan) separate from the members.

You end up with a mess, but it's the usual procedure.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

As with the "idealist/realist" debate, I think I'll leave this up to individual voter preference.

Yes, John, if you take Paul's suggestion to its reductio ad absurdum, you'd have Ringo in the HOA. Also Mick Jagger, Morrissey, Flavor Flav, Nico, Sting, Roger Waters, Roger Daltrey, Debbie Harry, Graham Coxon... You might have to induct Mick Jones for co-leading one great band and founding another pretty good one, or Eric Clapton for belonging to about 23 different good bands.

But Paul has a point, and it's this: there are cases where it's appropriate to evaluate both collaborative work and individual work, and jazz is probably the best example of that. The lion's share of albums on AM which are credited to more than one artist are jazz albums (and most of the rest are rap). The credit for Jazz at Massey Hall (AM's top album of 1953) HAS to go equally to Bird, Diz, Bud and Mingus--there's no other way to make sense of that record. And there are dozens of similar cases for jazz artists.

As has been true before in the world of pop music, John and Paul both have good ideas, even when they disagree...

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

"'I think probably not, but Michael Jackson may have done enough as a pre-teen to get into the HOA. I know that I value his Jackson 5 material more than his solo material.'

How many of you are judging solo artists entire careers rather than just their solo work? That's against the games rules, right?"

I would not vote for just Michael Jackson based upon his 1968-1975 material. In the event that I decided it merited inclusion in the HOA I would vote for the Jackson 5.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

"If someone's career is fractionary, take them as a whole (Coltrane, Parsons). If it's well delineated, take the larger entities (The Beatles, Wu-Tang Clan) separate from the members."

That's what I'm really doing.

Re: HOA: 1961 discussion thread

For the individual members vs. bands, I vote for them as solo artists based only on their solo work.

In other words, I will NOT consider any of Paul's Beatles work when voting for McCartney on the basis that he's COLLABORATING with the other Beatles to make that work. (i.e. John writing the "middle 8" in many of Paul's songs)

Although I can see the argument in the other direction, I think viewing it this way negates things like Ringo ending up in the HOA. (sorry Mr. Starkey)