Whitney Houston To Be Inducted Into Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame

Whitney Houston (screen capture via YouTube/I’m Every Woman)

Legendary singer and LGBTQ favorite Whitney Houston and rapper The Notorious B.I.G. were announced this morning as posthumous inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

This was the first time the two artists, who died in 2012 and 1997 respectively, had been on the nominating ballot.

Also part of the Rock Hall’s class of 2020 are: experimental/alternative rockers Nine Inch Nails, 1970’s soft rock artists the Doobie Brothers, synth-pop group Depeche Mode and English glam/rock band T. Rex.

The six inductees were chosen by an international group of over 1,000 recording artists, industry professionals, and historians.

An artist doesn’t become eligible for induction until 25 years after the release of their first single, album or EP, which means that this year’s class had to have released their first eligible music in 1994 or earlier.

Diversity has been a consistent criticism for the hall over the years. In her acceptance speech last year, Janet Jackson underscored the dearth of female inductees saying, “2020 – please induct more women.”

This year’s list of 16 artists under consideration included only 3 women. In addition to Houston, Pat Benatar made the shortlist for the first time but failed to get the nod, and Rufus featuring Chaka Khan was left out for the fourth time.

This is the first year that the winner of the Fan Vote, introduced in 2013, did not get chosen for induction.

The Dave Matthews Band led the Fan Vote with over a million votes cast online since October. Pat Benatar came in second with almost 900,000 votes.

But neither scored induction honors this year.

USA Today reports that music journalist-turned-producer Jon Landau, who worked with Bruce Springsteen, will be honored with the Ahmet Ertegun Award given to influential producers, songwriters and music executives.

Music manager Irving Azoff will also receive the same honor.

For the first time, the induction ceremony will be televised live on HBO. Tickets to the May 2 event in Cleveland go on sale February 27 at ticketmaster.com.

News Round-Up: December 13, 2018

• Austin Wolf celebrates getting his Instagram account back online (above). #HappyDanceTime
Austin Wolf

Some news items you might have missed:

• Austin Wolf celebrates getting his Instagram account back online (above). #HappyDanceTime

• The New York City subway attacker who sucker punched a woman he believed to be lesbian has been arrested. His victim suffered a fractured spine due to his attack.

• Janet Jackson is headed to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame along with Stevie Nicks, The Cure, Radiohead, Def Leppard, Roxy Music, and the Zombies. Nicks becomes the first woman to be inducted twice having been honored previously as part of Fleetwood Mac.

• Fox News host & Donald Trump superfan, Sean Hannity, was caught deleting past tweets that showed his connections to the president’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, just hours before Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison Wednesday.

• CBS News reports that Donald Trump is considering his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to be his third Chief of Staff.

• Tony Award winner and current Golden Globe nominee Billy Porter dropped a few holiday tracks on Soundcloud just in time for Christmas. The collection – “A Billy Porter Christmas” – can be found here.

Check out his smooth, soulful “Christmas Time Is Here” below.

2019 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Nominations Are Out!

Janet Jackson (image via Twitter)

The nominations for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Class of 2019 have been announced.

Making the list this year are Radiohead, Def Leppard, Stevie Nicks, Rage Against the Machine, the Cure, Devo, Janet Jackson, Kraftwerk, LL Cool J, Roxy Music, Todd Rundgren, John Prine, MC5, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan and the Zombies.

Billboard Magazine gives Radiohead, Stevie Nicks, Janet Jackson and the Zombies the leading edge – but who knows?

For those who may be wondering, no, Janet isn’t a ‘rock act’ so to speak. But Madonna has gotten the honor as has Donna Summer. So I’m an emphatic ‘yes’ when it comes to giving Janet the nod.

Look for the announcement for this year’s inductees to be made in December with the ceremonial induction scheduled for March 29th, 2019 at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.

HBO has announced a broadcast of the event for some time next year.

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Announces 2017 Inductees

This year’s inductees: Joan Baez, Pearl Jam, Tupac Shakur, Journey, Electric Light Orchestra, and Yes. Nile Rodgers will receive the Award for Musical Excellence.

The big news is that for the second year the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has passed over Janet Jackson.

The inductions will take place April 7 in New York City.

From Cleveland.com:

 For the second year in a row, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame voters have passed on Janet Jackson, one of the biggest pop stars of all time. Despite a strong social media push from her fans, Jackson couldn’t get over the hump.

Some might argue Jackson, who sold more than 100 million records and helped break down color barriers on MTV, deserved induction over acts like Journey and Tupac.

Jackson’s candidacy is a hotly contested one. Some rock diehards refuse to acknowledge her as a snub, considering she doesn’t meet their definition of “rock.” However, Jackson’s resume stacks up favorably to previous inductees like Madonna, Donna Summer and her brother Michael Jackson.

Other nominees who seemed to have a somewhat decent chance of getting inducted, but weren’t, include Jane’s Addition, Chic, The Cars, J. Geils Band, Depeche Mode and Kraftwerk. Jane’s Addiction will have a hard time moving forward with more 90s era bands like Rage Against the Machine and Radiohead becoming eligible.

2017 Rock & Roll Hallf Of Fame Nominations Announced

From Cleveland.com:

Depeche Mode, Jane’s Addiction, Journey, Electric Light Orchestra, Joan Baez, Steppenwolf and Bad Brains have made the ballot for the Rock Hall’s Class of 2017. It represents each artist’s first nomination since becoming eligible years ago.

An artist is eligible for nomination 25 years after its first release. The members of the Class of 2017 will be announced in December with the annual Rock Hall ceremony set for April in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Depeche Mode has been eligible since 2006; Journey since 2000. Steppenwolf has been waiting since 1993. ELO fans have been lobbying since 1996. Meanwhile, Joan Baez has been eligible (wait for it) since 1985!

My picks? Janet Jackson, Journey, Joan Baez, Chic (11 nominations now!) and Pearl Jam. I’d also throw in Depeche Mode for huge influence.

Inductees will be announced in December.

2015 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Inductees Announced

This year’s class of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees have been announced. This year’s inductees (via Rolling Stone) are:

• Lou Reed,
• Green Day
• Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble
• Joan Jett and the Blackhearts
• Bill Withers
• the Paul Butterfield Blues Band

Ringo Starr will be given the Award For Musical Excellence; 1950s R&B group the “5” Royales will receive the Early Influence Award.

The festivities will be held at Cleveland’s Public Hall on April 18th, 2015. The public is invited to attend with tickets going on sale this Thursday.

Artists are eligible for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25 years after the release of their first album or single.

This was Green Day’s first year of eligibility; Green Day becomes the 48th act inducted in their first year of eligibility.

Joan Jett tweeted her excitement:

KISS won’t play at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction

This is a tough one.

While I’m not a huge fan of KISS’ music, I’ve always respected the longevity of the band and their connection to their fans.

Apparently, there is a split with the current members of the band with original members Frehley and Peter Criss.  Should the current line up play at the RR Hall of Fame induction?  Or the current lineup of Stanley, Simmons, Eric Singer and Tommy Thayer would play instead?

The original band members have not played together for 13 years.

The band issued a statement saying they won’t play at all:

“Our intention was to celebrate the entire history of Kiss and give
credit to all members, including longtime present members Tommy Thayer
and Eric Singer, and additionally Bruce Kulick and Eric Carr all who
have made this band what it is, regardless of the Rock and Roll Hall Of
Fame’s point of view,” the band wrote on its web site. “Although Kiss
has moved forward far longer without them, Ace and Peter are at the very
foundation of what we have built and this would all be impossible had
they not been a part of it in the beginning.”
What do you think?  Should it be the original members?  Current?  Did the band pick the right solution for the fans?
Curious what other folks think…

Donna Summer inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame – finally

This past Thursday, April 18, at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, Donna Summer was officially inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Finally. And deservedly.

Summer’s family — husband singer-songwriter and producer Bruce Sudano; their two daughters, Brooklyn and Amanda; and daughter Mimi from her first marriage — posted a message on her website, donnasummer.com:

“We are overjoyed the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has recognized Donna’s tremendous musical achievements. It’s an honor we know she quietly hoped for and would very much cherish. We are deeply grateful.”

Brian Edwards, Summer’s assistant from 1989 to 1995, and her client relations representative for the last seven years of her life, shared his thoughts on the long-overdue induction:

“Donna was more than just ‘the Queen of Disco,’ ” Edwards wrote in an email. “Yes, her introduction to stardom was a result of her major successes in the field of disco at the time. However, her career encompassed so many different musical genres, including R&B, gospel, pop, jazz and pure rock and roll.”

And Edwards wasn’t done defending the artist who won the very first Grammy for rock vocal performance by a female for 1979’s “Hot Stuff.”

“No disrespect to Madonna, but given the majority of her hit records are pop/dance-oriented, no one said anything when she was inducted [into the Rock Hall],” Edwards wrote. “And she has NEVER even been nominated for a Grammy in the rock [vocal] category, yet she shares the same distinction as Summer as a recipient of a Grammy in the best dance recording category.”

The Dance Recording category was introduced in 1997, and the first winner was – Donna Summer.

“The facts speak for themselves,” the ever-loyal Edwards wrote. “In my opinion, Donna Summer is more of a true rock artist than Madonna will ever be.”

2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

What: The Class of 2013 will be inducted in the Cleveland-based Hall of Fame.

Randy Newman
Public Enemy
Donna Summer
Albert King

Ahmet Ertegun Award for Lifetime Achievement:
Lou Adler
Quincy Jones

Daughter Brooklyn Sudano, Client Relations rep Brian Edwards and husband Bruce Sudano

Super model Cindy Crawford, Client Relations rep Brian Edwards and Summer’s longtime manager Susan Munao
on the red carpet of the 2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony

All smiles on the red carpet at seeing longtime friend and client Donna Summer inducted into
the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

An edited version of the show will be broadcast 9 p.m. Saturday, May 18 on HBO.


Donna Summer – Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2013

What better news than this?  So long in coming; so well deserved.  Contactmusic is reporting that Donna Summer, uber-diva, will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year.

Artists become eligible 25 years after the domestic release of their first commercial full-length record.  

“We are overjoyed the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame has recognized Donna’s tremendous musical achievements. Its an honor we know she quietly hoped for and would very much cherish. We are deeply grateful.” – The Family of Donna Summer

“The family cannot fully express the gratitude they feel for the outpouring of love received over the past few months in support of Donna’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame.  From fellow recording artists and industry executives to friends and fans from around the world, it will not be forgotten.” – Brian Edwards, Enter Talking Client Relations