WOW! The Summer of 2021 is totally kicking my ass! Seriously folks! I only intended to take a week or two off from the blog to enjoy the birth of my third grandchild and take a small getaway with my wife to visit the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Well, you know the old saying, the best laid plans? We’ve had something going on nearly every day, which caused my body to revolt against this whirlwind after manning the grill on a hot 4th of July evening. That day, I went to the bedroom to rest my back around 8 pm. The next thing I realize it’s 6 am. I did get up but again fell asleep in my chair for another two hours, followed by another four hour stretch of sleep. It honestly took until today for my body to get back to my new “normal” as an older man with chronic pain.
Although my brother and sister-in-law are in town to help clean out Mom’s house for our step-father, that job has been accomplished, we have an “off-day.” Everyone is doing their own thing right now, so here I am, FINALLY getting back to doing some writing.
Now boys and girls, did you catch the place my wife and I visited this summer? I could NOT wait for Todd Rundgren’s induction to make that four-and-a-half-hour journey to Cleveland. We had not been there since our older son was still in high school, so my wife was excited to make the trek.
“So, Mr. Self-Appointed Rock Critic, what did you think?”
In a word? Awesome! I mean, I cannot begin to describe just how cool the place is. And, although The Jam has not been inducted, they do have items in a couple of displays honoring the original London punk scene of the Seventies. And, the Hall’s special display covering the history of the Super Bowl half-time shows is outstanding! Of course, the Hall has some of the best multi-media interactive displays known to our species. Plus, they knew just how to pace an old beat-up geezer like me with some excellent films. The one about Dick Clark and his highly influential American Bandstand is just outstanding, while the other film, a compilation of some of the induction ceremonies’ finest musical moments is terrific as well. Unfortunately, since they were just beginning to lift the COVID restrictions, their larger theater was closed. That was a disappointment because I love to watch the big run-through of all the inductees on film. In my previous two visits to the Hall in the early 2000s, that film was indeed a highlight.
And, of course, that visit to the Hall did trigger my latest list about eligible performers who should be inducted. Since that mid-June visit, I have been honing my list of 150 artists who should be in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Now, allow me to explain a couple of things. First, I am NOT an expert; I’m only a fan. Second, my knowledge of rock’s foundational stars is very limited, so I limit myself to endorsing some of the most glaring artists in my mind who have unjustly been overlooked for far too long. Finally, these are MY opinions, which are, as the crude saying goes, “like anal openings – everybody’s got one.” My only qualification is that I have a pretty good-sized music collection and love to read biographical and historical books about rock music and the musicians. Oh, and I have this little blog and have been told I can write a little.
Now, about this list. I have a huge problem with making these kinds of lists. Succinctly, I am a horrible self-editor. That’s why there’s so many grammatical errors in these entries. So, I don’t have anyone yelling at me to “cut the crap,” or ask the burning question, “Do The Cowsills or Black Oak Arkansas really need to be on this list?” (Answer: my heart says “YES!” to both, but my brain simply said “No.”)
Yet, I do have a monstrous list of 150 artists who are all eligible for induction next year, 2022. Hopefully, the Rock Hall will follow this year’s template for the induction of a large number of artists while utilizing many different categories in order to induct more session musicians and industry players. Additionally, and this is not my idea, I would love to see rock journalists get inducted. Sure, the music invited me in to the rock world, but it was the descriptive verbiage of people like Lester Bangs, Dave Marsh, Lisa Robinson, Jaan Uhelszki, among many others, who romanticized the rock scene to me in the pages of Creem, Circus, Hit Parader, Rolling Stone, et. al., as an impressionable teen.
Today, I will present to you my list of artists, initially with their most famous song, ranked from 150 down to 101. Following that will be, of course, a blog covering 100 to 51, 50 to 26 and, finally, 25 to 1. Hopefully, those of you in the Northern Hemisphere have your air conditioner turned on, while you down under try to stay warm. If you are a fan of the Hall, I hope this series stirs up some discussion amongst you. And, if you are just a fan of music or just like to support me with your click onto this page, I hope I can broaden your knowledge base a bit. Let’s get this countdown rolling!
150. Procol Harum (“A Whiter Shade of Pale,” 1967)
149. Marilyn Manson (“The Beautiful People,” 1996)
148. Blur (“Song 2,” 1997)
147. The Jesus and Mary Chain (“Just like Honey,” 1985)
146. Blood, Sweat & Tears (“Spinning Wheel,” 1968)
145. Korn (“Freak on a Leash,” 1998)
144. Siouxsie and the Banshees (“Kiss Them for Me,” 1991)
143. The Stone Roses (“I Wanna Be Adored,” 1989)
142. Slade (“Cum on Feel the Noize,” 1973)
141. REO Speedwagon (“Ridin’ the Storm Out (live),” 1976)
140. Pantera (“Walk,” 1992)
139. Misfits (“Skulls,” 1982)
138. Nick Drake (“Pink Moon,” 1972)
137. Neil Sedaka (“Breaking Up Is Hard to Do,” 1962/1975)
136. Herbie Hancock (“Rockit,” 1983)
135. The Guess Who (“American Woman,” 1970)
134. Tracy Chapman (“Fast Car,” 1988)
133. Gordon Lightfoot (“Sundown,” 1974)
132. Emerson, Lake & Palmer (“Lucky Man, 1970)
131. Cliff Richard & the Shadows (“We Don’t Talk Anymore,” 1979)
130. Slayer (“Raining Blood,” 1986)
129. Mott the Hoople (“All the Young Dudes,” 1972)
128. The Stylistics (“You Make Me Feel Brand New,” 1974)
127. KC & the Sunshine Band (“Get Down Tonight,” 1974)
126. Warren Zevon (“Werewolves of London,” 1978)
125. Pet Shop Boys (“West End Girls,” 1986)
124. Megadeth (“Hangar 18,” 1990)
123. Joe Cocker (“Feelin’ Alright,” 1968)
122. Sublime (“Santeria,” 1996)
121. Stone Temple Pilots (“Interstate Love Song,” 1994)
120. Love (“7 & 7 Is,” 1966)
119. The Roots (“Dear God 2.0,” 2010)
118. Carly Simon (“You’re So Vain,” 1972)
117. Jeff Buckley (“Hallelujah,” 1994)
116. The Time (“Jungle Love,” 1984)
115. XTC (“Dear God,” 1986)
114. Paul Weller (“Peacock Suit,” 1996)
113. Foreigner (“Urgent,” 1981)
112. PJ Harvey (“Sheela-Na-Gig,” 1992)
111.Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (“Loverman,” 1994)
110. Björk (“Hyperballad,” 1995)
109. “Weird Al” Yankovic (“Eat It,” 1984)
108. Blink-182 (“All the Small Things,” 1999)
107. The Flying Burrito Brothers (“Hot Burrito #2,” 1969)
106. Dave Matthews Band (“Crash into Me,” 1996)
105. INXS (“Don’t Change,” 1982)
104. Mary J. Blige (“Family Affair,” 2001)
103. X (“Johny Hit and Run Pauline,” 1980)
102. Phil Collins (“In the Air Tonight,” 1981)
101. TLC (“Waterfalls,” 1995)
And that wraps up today’s entry. Stay tuned to see whose the next 50. Peace, love and happiness!