Eight musical acts that have never been nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame made the ballot this year: Sheryl Crow, Missy Elliott, Joy Division/New Order, Cyndi Lauper, George Michael, Willie Nelson, The White Stripes, and Warren Zevon.
The White Stripes and Missy Elliott were eligible for the first time this year since the act has to have released its first album in 1998 or earlier.
Of the six other acts on the ballot, Rage Against The Machine has been nominated the most: five times. Kate Bush, who enjoyed a surprise renaissance courtesy of “Stranger Things” using her 1985 song “Running Up That Hill” last year, is on for the fourth time and that alone might get her over the top this year. It’s also a fourth run for the Spinners and the first time since 2016 with the R&B group’s previous nominations in 2012 and 2015. A Tribe Called Quest, Soundgarden and Iron Maiden are each on a second time.
None of the nominees have any strong Georgia ties.
In an unusual situation, Joy Division and New Order were nominated together despite being two separate groups. But the three key members of New Order came together after the death of Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis in 1980 and added a keyboardist (Gillian Gilbert).
This combo deal has happened before. The Hall of Fame previously inducted Parliament/Funkadelic together in 1997; the Rascals and Young Rascals, also in 1997; and Small Faces/Faces as a single entity in 2012.
Currently, former New Order bassist Peter Hook is estranged from his former New Order bandmates and tours with his own band, but if the Joy Division/New Order combo gets inducted into the Hall of Fame, a reunion might be possible at least for one night. Also, The White Stripes have been inactive for more than a decade and Meg and Jack White have not been on stage together since 2009.
As Rolling Stone noted, past Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions have brought back dormant bands like Cream, Led Zeppelin, Talking Heads, the Police, and the Doors into one room.
And while there is always a debate over what rock and roll is, Nelson is yet another country act to be nominated following Dolly Parton’s induction last year. Missy Elliott and A Tribe Called Quest represent hip-hop.
About 1,000 music professionals vote for induction. The public also gets one ballot vote and they can vote once a day until April 28 at vote.rockhall.com/en/. You can vote for up to five nominees. Inductees, typically a half dozen or so, will be revealed in May, with the ceremony scheduled in the fall.
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