Wild Bill Ketelhut provides the "blog" to this anti-blog
Wild At Heart
Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame nominees and my choices.
It is that time of year again for the yearly nominations for the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame and the list of 16 artists has been released including a diverse group representing funk, rap, prog, blues, alternative, grunge and classic rock. This year’s list includes hard rockers KISS, disco/R&B band Chic, art rocker Peter Gabriel, easy listening duo Hall & Oates, alt rock pioneers the Replacements, early funk masters the Meters, 11 time Grammy winner Linda Ronstadt, blues rockers Paul Butterfield Blues Band, English rockers Deep Purple, rapper LL Cool J, singer/songwriter Cat Stevens, gansta rappers NWA, guitar legend Link Wray, grunge superstars Nirvanna, prog rockers Yes and classic rockers Zombies.
Of this list, 5 of these bands will make it into the Hall this year and I thought this would be a great time to add my 2 cents into the mix of which 5 I would put into the Hall. Of these bands, I can already get rid of Linda Ronstadt, Hall & Oates, LL Cool J and Chic which don’t really capture my interest enough for the Hall Of Fame despite being great bands. At this time, I would also neglect the Meters. They are a big influence on early funk but they are also the only band on the list that I am not overly familiar with and there are a few slam dunks this year to give me a bit of time to learn more about them.
Of the remaining 10 bands, I think they will all get in the Hall but there are 5 that I feel should get in this year. Starting that list is KISS who I cannot believe are not in the Hall yet. Without even looking at all the best selling albums and rocking songs, you can just look at how they changed the marketability of rock-n-roll with comic books infused with blood from the band members to every item imaginable including pinball machines to coffins and not forgetting their early movies. Only Elvis and the Beatles come close to the marketing juggernaut that KISS has maintained over the years and they are still a great live band that epitomizes what a rock concert should be. One of my favorite concert experiences was that first reunion show they did at the old Tigers stadium, from seeing all the people showing off their KISS tattoos to Gene breathing fire.
My 2nd no-brainer choice would be Peter Gabriel. Like KISS, he has a lot of influence outside of just writing and performing music. He has always been big on projects like WITNESS and Amnesty International to name a couple. He has been a big supporter of international music as seen with WOMAD and one of the artists to promote digital media. His work as leader of Genesis was groundbreaking and theatrical and his solo work has been diverse and unique among the regular pop voices. Just think of the African back drop on "In Your Eyes", the anti-war notions of "Games Without Frontiers" or the spiritualness of "Solisbury Hill". Peter Gabriel has been a huge influence in the musical community but has also shown, more than any other artist, even Bono, what you can do to translate your musical legacy into helping others. Great music and greater humanitarian.
My next 2 choices are just classic rock bands that should get in sooner than later with Deep Purple and the Zombies. Once the world's loudest band, Deep Purple pioneered modern heavy metal and hard rock and have been the public's #2 band they want to see in. Heck, "Smoke In the Water" is a seminal rock song and alone is worthy of inclusion. They should have been inducted long ago. The Zombies were a solid rock band with a number of hits and great albums and Rod Argent is one of the great rock keyboardists. (I would also be OK if the Paul Butterfield Blues Band took this spot as Paul is one of the great blues harpists and the band was very innovative for it's time).
My last spot would be for Link Wray whose "Rumble" is one of the great early rock records and his usage of power chords highlighted the way for punk and heavy rock and is one of the best guitarists ever. If we cannot put in here, maybe he can be placed in as an early influence.
That means next year I would look closer at Nirvana and Yes (and the Zombies/Butterfield hold out) and we'll see you becomes eligible next year. I would then leave NWA, the Replacements and Cat Stevens for future years. So to recap, my top 5 choices are KISS, Peter Gabriel, Deep Purple, Zombies and Link Wray.
After talking about all these great bands, here are some choices for this week as you can see past inductees Brian Wilson (w/ the Beach Boys), Jeff Beck (w/ the Yardbirds and solo), Rod Stewart (w/ the Faces and solo) and Steve Winwood (w/ Traffic):
Friday (10/25) - Brian Wilson w/Jeff Beck @ Fox Theatre, Joanne Shaw Taylor @ Callahans, Common @ Masonic Temple, King Khan and the Shrines @ Magic Stick, Sheryl Crow opens for Gary Allen @ Palace Of Auburn Hills, Morris Day and the Time @ Andiamos Celebrity Showroom
Saturday (10/26) - Rod Stewart w/Steve Winwood @ Palace Of Auburn Hills
Monday (10/27) - Melt Banana @ Pike Room