Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame sucks.

I could probably end my post right there and you'd have the gist of what I want to say. But I guess I should explain.

First of all, it's in Cleveland. Really. Cleveland.

But that's not the worst of it. The worst is that it's perfectly willing to induct rap artists, blues artists, artists from various genres that have little to nothing to do with rock, but they deliberately snub artists from one of the more important rock sub-genres, progressive rock.

How many progressive rock artists have been inducted into the Hall? Well there's Genesis. Certainly the Peter Gabriel lineup was a progressive rock band. Not sure if they would have been inducted if it weren't for the poppier Phil Collins version of the band, but whatever. We'll give them that one.

Then there's Pink Floyd. That's a legitimate entry. 'Nuff said.

Wikipedia lists both Queen and Rush as progressive rock bands. I'm not totally sure about this categorization of Rush, and it took years and a lot of arm-twisting from their fans to get them in there, but OK.

I'm not sure if most people would consider The Who a progressive rock band, but with the rock operas, sometimes use of synthesizers, etc., they certainly had progressive rock elements.

And that's about it.

No Jethro Tull. No Yes. No Moody Blues or Emerson, Lake & Palmer, or even King Crimson. Don't even think about bands like Strawbs, Renaissance, Procol Harum or Gentle Giant. We have N.W.A. though. Boy, do we have N.W.A.

The problem is that the induction process is controlled by a closed little club of people who obviously let their personal tastes and prejudices rule supreme over any kind of logic or fairness. Jann Wehner and his little cabal rule the process with an iron hand, and they keep the process of who gets selected and how as secret as they can. I'm pretty sure there is some human sacrifice involved, some upside-down crucifixes. Definitely some Satan's penis kissing. It's the only thing that makes sense.

I love music. It's one of the most important things in my life. But if I gave you a list of my favorite 20 bands/artists of all time (which I won't, at least not today. After the last couple of posts, I'm all listed out for awhile), only nine of the 20 are currently R&RHoF inductees. Two of them aren't eligible yet, so there's a valid reason there. One of them, Rush, had to practically break down the doors. And I appreciate that a band like The Good Rats were never that well known nationally, although I think they should have been. But what about the others? The answer -- most are progressive rock bands, the sub-genre that dare not speak its name. (At least not in Cleveland).

So until Jethro Tull and Yes, at least, are inducted, I will never visit The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and I'll always maintain that Jann Wehner sucks. Because he does.