The window of opportunity to write and post this update is more along the lines of a porthole, really. Meaning it’s very small indeed. I have no time, my friends. So, I thought I’d just post my quick thoughts on the 2019 list of Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame inductees, which was announced today. How’s that sound? …Yeah, that’s what I was afraid of. Onward!
First of all, have you ever been to the so-called Rock Hall? I have, and it’s good, I guess. I wasn’t completely blown away, but it was certainly well-done. I remember there was almost nothing about Bob Dylan in there, which seemed weird to me. And I remember some drawings of football players by a very young Jimi Hendrix, which kinda blew my mind. You almost forget that the mythological rock gods were actually, you know, regular people at some point. The drawings were not very good, just typical kid stuff. But those kinds of things stick with me more than just guitar after guitar after glittery jacket after high-rise boot. Ya know?
Anyway. I have no idea what criteria is used during the selection process. But I can tell you one thing… it’s a true basket of turds. I mean, it feels 100% arbitrary. There are BAFFLING choices, both in the list of people who get in, and the list of people who do not. I don’t want to be totally dismissive, but it doesn’t seem to have an enormous amount of integrity. Am I wrong?
In any case, here’s the Class of 2019 and my quick thoughts on each:
Stevie Nicks Uh, no. I can take her in the context of Fleetwood Mac, but undiluted? What possible reason would there be to do such a thing? There’s so much good, challenging music out there. But, on the other hand… she’s very mysterious, like a gypsy witch, and has a lot of scarves and spins round and round on stage, etc. And she does sing like an agitated pygmy goat. So, perhaps I’m wrong?
Janet Jackson Seriously? Why?? She had some poppy radio hits. But so did a lot of people. Apparently having Jackson as a last name goes a long way. Next year they’ll probably induct Reggie Jackson.
Radiohead I believe their first two albums featured actual music. Then it just turned into caterwauling and various sound effects. Years ago stores that sold stereos would have demonstration tapes you could play to test out speakers before you bought ’em. It was all just random sounds, like dogs barking and ambulance sirens and that kind of thing. I think that if we unearthed one of those recordings today, and put Radiohead’s name on it, Rolling Stone would give it five stars and call it brilliant and revolutionary.
The Cure I’m down with that. They’ve been around since the late 1970s and have been very consistent. Lots of great songs, and several great albums. I have no issue with this pick.
Def Leppard I don’t know… When the list of possible inductees was released I knew they’d be a slam-dunk. It just feels very Rock n Roll Hall of Fame, right? And I don’t have a problem with the band. Their albums are fun and sound great in a car. But are they innovative and especially important? Have they moved the ball forward in any way? I don’t know about that.
Roxy Music To tell you the truth, I’m no expert. I’m very familiar with their album Avalon, which is excellent. And I’ve heard some of their earlier work, but not enough to offer an educated opinion. However, as a young hillbilly child, I did appreciate their Country Life album cover. Oh, I appreciated that one real good. And for that alone, they belong.
The Zombies Hell yeah! This choice made me the happiest. I’m a big fan of the band and believe their final album, Odessey and Oracle, is one of the best of all time. I saw them about a year ago, with all the original surviving members. And they sounded fantastic. A great, somewhat surprising choice!
Folks who didn’t make the cut: Devo, John Prine, Kraftwerk, LL Cool J, MC5, Rage Against the Machine, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan and Todd Rundgren. Yeah, I know… a lot of it doesn’t make any sense. Janet and Stevie, but not John Prine? Whatever, man. Pass the beer nuts.
I have to go now. Please remember to use our Amazon links! Even if I’ve insulted one of your favorite artists above. Just click through, buy a lot of high ticket items, and that’s that. It’ll cost you zero extra dollars, and only about three or four extra seconds of time. But it makes a big difference, so please try to remember.
Also, I posted a new podcast episode for patrons today. Right here.
And I’ll see you guys again on Monday
Have a great weekend!