Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Rant #343: Hall of Stain
Yes, it is that time of year again.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced its nominations for its hallowed halls, and once again, it is pretty much a crapshoot--with the emphasis on crap--about who will get in this year, and even more focus on what acts were excluded once again.
Let's analyze each of the nominees and why they should or shouldn't get in:
Bon Jovi: Sorry, but we know why they were nominated--to get higher ratings for the broadcast on Fuse.
Alice Cooper: A worthy choice, but remember "Alice Cooper" started off as a band, not as the guy who took its name as his own.
Donovan: Another worthy choice, a guy who epitomized flower power, but, sadly, never escaped it.
Dr. John: No, I don't think he is worthy enough, although many in New Orleans would disagree.
Tom Waits: The same thing here. Why he was even nominated is beyond me.
Neil Diamond: A worthy choice, but only for his work between 1965 to about 1971 or so. After that, it's all dreck.
Beastie Boys: No, they have nothing to do with rock and roll.
LL Cool J: No, he has nothing to do with rock and roll.
Chic: No, they have nothing to do with rock and roll, but I would nominate Nile Rodgers alone from the group if I could.
Donna Summer: No, she has nothing to do with rock and roll.
Darlene Love: The quintessential background singer of the girl group era deserves to get in this time around.
Joe Tex: He is the bridge between rhythm and blues, funk and disco, so if you consider disco a stepchild of rock and roll, then he must get in.
Chuck Willis: An early father of rock and roll, but I don't think his influence was as wide as some think it to be.
J. Geils Band: No, I don't think so, although they did have some great records during their heyday.
Laura Nyro: Her mix of pop, rock, Broadway, gospel and probably a dozen other genres all wrapped up in a ball hasn't ever been challenged.
So there are the nominees. About five or six will get in.
You can bet the house on Bon Jovi. They have to get in or no one will watch this show, or so the HoF thinks by nominating them.
Alice Cooper, Tom Waits and probably Chic will get in, because by allowing them entrance, the HoF can prove just how eclectic it is--and to some, including me, how stupid it is.
The others--even Neil Diamond--might have to wait a bit longer for entrance, although of the remaining few, Diamond probably has the best chance. His influence on Bruce Springsteen--whether Springsteen wants to admit it or not--is enormous. Just listen to "Kentucky Woman" and tell me The Boss doesn't have that song on his iPod.
And he wrote probably the greatest pure pop/rock song of all time: "I'm a Believer."
As for the acts that should have been nominated, well, in my estimation, because of Jan Wenner, they probably never will be nominated.
That list includes the Moody Blues, Paul Revere and the Raiders, Chicago and the Monkees.
And what about Michael Nesmith? Keeping him out of the HoF is sort of like keeping Pete Rose out of the baseball HoF--it seems hollow not to have the guy who was the godfather of both country rock and MTV to be shut out, as silly as it is for the baseball HoF to keep its hits leader Rose out, even though he has had his indiscretions.
The only indiscretion Nesmith had was to be with the Monkees--that is Wenner's belief, not mine--and it just doesn't make any sense.
But does the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ever make any sense?
Posted by Larry at 3:43 AM