ME’s thoughts on the 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees

The HOF is a fun place to visit and you should go if you get a chance. But I’m well aware that a lot of people think the whole idea of voting is a crock of shit. And it may well be. But that’s never stopped me from throwing in my opinion ‘coz it’s just fun.

Tip ‘o the hat to blogger Michelle MB for corroborating that these are actual inductees and not just candidates.

Here’s the list along with my thoughts and some random tunes.

Performer Category:

  • Tina Turner -Long overdue
  • Carole King – Long overdue
  • The Go-Go’s = Yeah, I think so. A pivotal band once again proving that women can rock.
  • JAY-Z – I’m not much for rap so I can give a ‘yes’ based on the respect he gets and his longevity. Plus, like him I got (at least) 99 problems.
  • Foo Fighters – Is Dave Grohl not one of THE guys in rock?
  • Todd Rundgren – Overdue and I will always say ‘yes’ to a fellow Philly boy.

Early Influence Award: The Early Influence Award shall be given to a performing artist or group whose music and performance style have directly influenced and helped inspire and evolve rock & roll and music that has impacted youth culture

  • Kraftwerk – OK. I don’t know if it’s me or the HOF but one of us doesn’t understand the term ‘early influence.’
  • Charley Patton – This makes sense. Early blues guy.
  • Gil Scott-Heron – Of all the choices on this list, Scott-Heron makes me the happiest. Again, not really an ‘early influence’ since his heyday was the 70’s. But, I’ll take it. I wrote about him a few years ago. You can check it out here.

Musical Excellence Award:

  • LL Cool J – another rapper for whom I can say sure, based on his long-standing reputation.
  • Billy Preston – another odd category but yeah, glad to see Billy get in. He had a long career but eventually became famous due to his association with the Beatles who met him when he was touring with Little Richard.
  • Randy Rhoads – a great guitarist, very influential. That’s him on “Crazy Train.”

Ahmet Ertegun Award:

  • Clarence Avant – I had to look him up. Wikipedia says he’s “an American music executive, entrepreneur, and film producer, who also goes by the name of ‘The Black Godfather.;”

I tried to find a 2021 playlist on Spotify. But the lame-os who created them either overstuffed it with their favorites or left people off altogether. If you’re gonna do a list of inductees, do ’em all or don’t fucking bother.

22 thoughts on “ME’s thoughts on the 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees

  1. Overall, the class of 2021 inductees looks pretty good. While I briefly visited Cleveland during a road trip in the summer of 1993, for some reason, I didn’t go to the HOF, so this remains on my bucket list.

    I know we’ve debated the HOF’s merits in the past. While it certainly isn’t perfect, the way I look at it nowadays is I’m happy when an artist I like gets in. When they induct somebody I don’t know or don’t like I don’t particularly care.

    This year, I’d like to call out Tina Turner (saw her twice – amazing performer!), Carole King (one of the best singer-songwriters in my book) and Todd Rundgren (a versatile artist I’ve yet to more fully explore).

    Dave Grohl strikes me as a musicians’ musician, so I’m also happy to see Foo Fighters inducted, even though I hardly know their music.

    As to Kraftwerk, I guess the “early influence” refers to electronic music, a genre I know next to nothing about. I’ve heard a handful of their tunes over the decades like “Autobahn”, “Das Modell and “Die Roboter”. “Das Modell” got a fair amount of radio play in Germany. I always felt Kraftwerk’s music sounds sterile (electronic – d’uh!) and never got into it.

    That being said, I’m not completely opposed to electronic music, especially when it’s spacey. For example, occasionally, I like listening to Klaus Schulze (“Timewind”), another German electronic music pioneer, and Jean-Michel Jarre (“Oxygène”).


    1. I think you would dig it there. If you strip away all the bullshit, rock and roll has a pretty interesting history and a rich variety. Much to see and listen to there.

      I like this year’s inductees overall. I did see Ike and Tina way back, like in high school. I wish we’d seen her solo as my wife is a big fan.

      I think you’re onto something with early influencers. Scott-Heron was hardly a rapper but he influenced a lot of them with ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.’ As to Kraftwerk, of course you like them. Since you’re German, I declare you to have no choice in the matter! 😎

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  2. Yeah, it used to really upset me on who didn’t get in (c’mon no Grand Funk or Steppenwolf?). I did a post on it back in October, too. But, hey, life’s too short to get your knickers in a knot over stuff you can’t control. And I can always listen to what I like, when I like.


        1. I didn’t look it up, just saw it in an article. Just surprisingly as Rundgren’s solo career seems pretty niche to me, while the Foo Fighters are pretty ubiquitous (but that’s probably got a lot to do with my age).

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  3. The only way Id know this was even happening is because I tune in here. Dont know half the names and what I do know would probably fit more into a “Music Hall Of Fame”. I guess I have a different idea about rock n roll.


    1. Yes, I know CB not to be a big fan of the Hall. I’ve actually argued that if they’re going to have such a beast they should rename it to something like the Popular Music Hall of Fame. And then you could have categories within it. Certainly Madonna, for example, is not a rocker but would be in, I suppose, some dance music category. And of course, disco would be in thee as well, quite possibly in some subterranean basement with the devil poking it with a pitchfork.

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        1. That’s ‘coz CB is Hard Drivin’ Man. We used to do that in a band I was in. Lotsa Geils. ‘Whammer Jammer’ too. See, now THAT shit is rock and roll. And blues. Too bad so many people know that for that ‘Freeze Frame’ and ‘Centerfold’ shit.

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  4. I think we’ve ‘chatted’ about the HoF a few times and I go round and round on whether or not it means anything… I mean get what it can mean but a lot of people really get up in arms.
    I belong to a few band groups over on that social media network beginning with F and I’m always shocked at how much anger when someone they don’t consider the correct genre – given the name – gets in over, say, Soundgarden. It’s not like there’s a cash prize is there? I suppose getting a bit more attention in the writeups might mean a few more streams these days.
    The Foo Fighters is an odd one… it seems a little premature and one of those more calculated bets from the Hall to get attention via Grohl (especially as they’re inducting the lot when DG is eligible for playing on the first album) and I wouldn’t say they were as especially important in the same way as that other band he used to be in.


    1. Yes but see, this is how polarizing it is. In the space of one comment, you’ve dismissed the anger others have over it, then gotten angry over the Foos! I kinda don’t care that much anymore. Like I said, it’s more of a fun parlor game. I think, for example, that J. Geils barely missing twice in row is a travesty but I’m not losing any sleep over it. And BTW, I envy that you can get ANY kind of musical conversation on FB. As to the HOF, I am getting up a petition to kick that wanker Jeff Beck out. What’s HE ever done?


      1. And it’s hi, ho silver lining….

        Well, I wouldn’t say I was angry – I just take it all with a grain of ‘meh’ these days. Life’s too short, you know?

        I follow Steve Van Zandt over on twitter and he usually expands a lot on it around voting time but I read that a lot of it is still down to Jan Wenner and his ego


        1. Apparently there’s a big beef between him and the Monkees too. I read a thing a while ago, and if it was one of your blogs I apologise as my memory is cack, about how he’s a similar toad with RS – pretty much dictating what gets album of the year (U2) over anyone else’s lists or actual album quality. Sounds like a real pleasant chap to work for.

          PS – Beck, at least, always brings the good cider


        2. Yeah, well, I used to like the Monkees as a kid. But despite some great tunes, I think I personally would question their induction. It’s a weird area.

          No, I don’t think you read that about him here. I’m surprised if he still has any sway at RS. He sold the fucking thing a while back. Now it’s this glossy mag indistinguishable from Vogue with people on the cover I never heard of. I get the newsletter though which is handy.

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