In news that should have happened a decade and a half ago, Rush and Deep Purple have finally been nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Whether they make the final list of inductees remains to be seen. The fact that neither band was even nominated before is simply ridiculous.
The list of people and bands nominated is actually quite deep: Albert King, Chic, Deep Purple, Donna Summer, Heart, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Kraftwerk, the Marvelettes, the Meters, N.W.A., Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Procol Harum, Public Enemy, Randy Newman and Rush.
I voted at the link above, where I could pick my top 5 and I chose Rush, Deep Purple, Heart (another one that should have been in long ago), Joan Jett and Randy Newman. But I’d definitely vote for Albert King, the Meters, N.W.A. and Public Enemy as well. Yes, I know those last two are rap groups, but the hall has started admitting hip hop artists and those two certainly stand out as the most revolutionary and influential.
Someone on my Facebook page wondered, if Deep Purple is finally inducted, would Glenn Hughes and David Coverdale be included? Good question. I think it’s up to the band’s current lineup to decide which former members are invited, but I could be wrong. The current lineup has three members of the classic lineup: Ian Gillen, Roger Glover and Ian Paice. Jon Lord recently passed away. I imagine the band will invite Ritchie Blackmore to be there, and I really hope he is, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he blew it off and didn’t show up. These days, he’s left rock and roll behind for folk music with his wife. Steve Morse, the current guitarist, would almost certainly be there as well.
But there are whole bunch of former members that might be invited, including Joe Satriani, who played in the band for a couple years in the 90s, Tommy Bolin, Joe Lynn Turner (also the singer for Rainbow for a time) and several others you’ve probably never heard of. But I don’t think the Hall invites everyone who was ever in the band, I think they invite the current band and they get to decide who else to invite. The Red Hot Chili Peppers included two drummers who were in the band before they ever put out an album, and even had them playing with them onstage.
Rush, of course, wouldn’t have those kinds of problems. They’ve had the same lineup for 38 years now and the only former member was the original drummer, Jon Rutsey, and he died a few years ago. But man, how overdue is that nomination? By what possible criteria do they not deserve to be there? They are phenomenal musicians who have influenced practically every rock band of the last few decades, they’ve got classic songs and albums, they continue to sell out arenas all over the world. Even if you don’t like the band, you have to admit they should be in hall (I feel the same way about KISS, a band that bores the hell out of me but certainly should be there).
Heart and Joan Jett absolutely belong there as well. And Albert King should join the long list of great blues guitarists and finally be inducted. I also went with Randy Newman because I think he’s such a great songwriter and such a brilliant wit.