Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Rock Hall 2015: A first look ahead

At some point someone's gonna
realize T. Rex isn't in. Right?
There's plenty of previously passed over artists who could make it into the Hall in 2015.

T Rex, Peter, Paul and Mary, Jethro Tull, The Monkees, Ozzy Osbourne, Def Leppard, Judas Priest and rap acts like NWA and LL Cool J head the mainstream list.

Kiss getting in might inch The New York Dolls (heavily influenced Kiss) and Cheap Trick (heavily influenced by Kiss) closer to consideration, and there's always a chance that someone hips Jann Wenner to Big Star and he realizes what an important act he's been missing over the course of his 68 years on the planet.

This year's induction of Nirvana gives CDNR favorites The Pixies and The Replacements an outside shot. The band strongly emulated (aped?) the loud-soft-loud dynamic that made The Pixies big and famous, and Kurt Cobain was a big-time fan of the Mats ("Nevermind" got its name from a Replacements song).

And let this be the first in our many efforts over the next year to push for The Smiths, who were not that far off from Beatles-level popularity and success in England during the 1980s and also did extremely well in the U.S. You'd be hard-pressed to find a band that boasts even the smallest element of emo and didn't love The Smiths.
Mikey Miss: Takin' a stand.

I actually think there's an outside chance Green Day gets in, and that just makes me sick. We're starting to see some public backlash to this idea, with a big Philadelphia-area sports radio personality, Mike Missanelli, saying they shouldn't be in. What makes this noteworthy is that I'd be willing to wager that 90 percent of Missanelli's audience that tunes into his show on 97.5 The Fanatic are enormous Green Day fans. There's also this post on AV Club by a comedian who smokes the band and "American Idiot."

Among the acts that will become eligible for the first time in 2015, I see three shoe-ins:

Alice In Chains

Failed attempts to make quality, relevant new music will only hurt their chances slightly. Nirvana's induction has started a run on excellent grunge bands that no one can argue against. Big albums, big influence, amazing guitar work and songwriting by Jerry Cantrell and an uber-talented pseudo frontman, Layne Staley, who died by overdose - this tragedy is actually a huge plus in their favor as far as Rock Hall induction. Also, they did an MTV "Unplugged." So they're in.

Smashing Pumpkins

You could say that three critically acclaimed albums - "Gish," "Siamese Dream," "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Album that Goes on Forever and Isn't Really That Good So Why Did They Bother Making It A Double Album" - does not a Hall of Fame career make, but then again Nirvana only had three albums total, and the Sex Pistols only had one album total, so there goes that argument. Besides a batch of great hooks, some tasty licks, and a few classic tracks, the Pumpkins are really nothing special. But they fit the mold of Hall of Fame band to a tee, complete with the potential of a long-overdue, publicity grabbing reunion.

The Black Crowes

The Rock Hall is all about Wenner and his boys reliving the glory years of the 1960s and early 1970s. The Black Crowes and their music live in that time period. Combine this with calls for the Hall to be more forward-thinking, and the Crowes are in. Obviously, this is a huge, huge, huge mistake, but it wouldn't be the first time one was made by the close-minded dweebs that vote for induction.

Later on we'll look at some of my dream inductions and likely snubs from the Class of 2015.

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