By: Jimi LaLumia
Our yearly update of those who are still missing
IGGY & THE STOOGES:
It’s mind blowing that The Velvet Underground (deservedly) made it in right away, but all the other bands associated with the origin and growth of punk, hardcore and grunge continue to be overlooked. As a frontman and a solo artist, Iggy Pop is now a global legend. People know of him without even knowing why, (yes, sort of like me!) This is one of the most severe strikes against the R&RHOF as it has been for years.
NEW YORK DOLLS:
Another band that has been so influential, yet consigned to the shadows. They were certainly never cover material for Rolling Stone, who were more geared toward earth shoes than platforms. This year the surviving Dolls reunited, toured, released a critically acclaimed CD, DVD, a great book by Kris Needs, and “NY Doll” the highly regarded theatrical release of the Arthur Kane story. Will anything ever be enough to get them in?
Along with The Stooges, The Dolls and The Velvet Underground, MC5 were part of a movement of bands united by uncompromising stances and material as well as true rock and roll rebels who comprised these lineups. The MC5 have also enjoyed their share of documentaries, books, and other hoopla in recent years, and deserve the long overdue acknowledgement.
Bowie’s in and Marc Bolan is not, and that’s just so wrong. T.Rex is what helped edge Bowie further and further into his Ziggy Stardust-era glam rock mode. Marc Bolan is the true pioneer of glam/glitter rock, and the artist most responsible for returning rock to it’s stomping, “hit singles” roots, especially in the UK, where Bolan dominated the album and singles charts at the dawn of the 70s.
MOTT THE HOOPLE:
Originally artsy, prog-rock, then glitter/glam by default (after Bowie swayed them into his Mainman web), they deserve entry just for “All The Young Dudes.” The fact is that they have such a strong body of work, and Ian Hunter continued to excel after the group disbanded. Their exclusion is yet another HOF crime.
The ground breaking priestess of punk has come close once or twice, but she runs into the same closed door every time. There is no denying how powerfully she affected an entire generation of females who were drawn to participate in rock and roll because her style broke down every existing stereotype that might have still been lurking around.
As goes KISS, so goes Cooper, who initiated the children of the early 70s into the rites and rituals of going to stadium shows and buying every single and album on the release date. Alice Cooper rocked hard and his early albums highlight a great body of work. Most importantly, he re-introduced show biz into rock and roll, and I happen to think that’s a good thing.
Old-timer number one. His prominence during “Twist Mania” must be acknowledged if there is any justice in the world. His flow of hits got kids dancing to teen music after a period of late 50s pap, his contribution is very real and he belongs in.
Old-timer number two. Motown’s Supremes are in there, and so are Motown’s Martha & the Vandellas, but the label’s first girl group continues to stand in the shadows. The Beatles thought enough of this group’s sound and songwriting to cover “Please Mr. Postman,” and that track, by the way, became Motown’s first ever #1 single on Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles Chart. The very first Motown #1! C’mon! Plus the group had numerous other fab hits like “PlayBoy,” “The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game,” “Don’t Mess With Bill,” and “My Baby Must Be A Magician” to name but a few. Let justice be served!
YES, KISS! At the end of the day, if it really is a Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, then KISS belongs in it. They saved an entire decade from disco, keeping rock’s head above water while signed to Casablanca, the ultimate disco label at one point in time. Based on their first five albums and because they symbolize rock and roll to so many, the fact that they are not included in the Hall just seems ridiculous.