Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Should Not Exist

"Certainly the body of artists on the museum's roster represents pop—yes, it's a certain idea of pop, one with a stamp of Importance that's defined by values rooted in privileging rock's ethos over others, but it's pop nonetheless."
Awl pal Maura Johnston is right to sigh and complain about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's inherently awkward and confounding selection process. (And she gets to, because she voted!) I think it's an institution that should not exist. The fact that Joan Jett didn't qualify as a first-ballot inductee speaks to why. Even under the problematic organizing principle that has the Beastie Boys making it in over Eric B. & Rakim, who embodies rock's ethos more than Joan Jett? She's sold millions of records, she doesn't care about her reputation, she loves rock n' roll more famously than anyone else in the world, and she'll sit in a tiger-striped lounge chair biting the head off of rose after rose after rose after rose, spitting every one back in your face.

15 Comments / Post A Comment

laurel (#4,035)

You're right about everything, as is Maura, including that the RnRHoF is pointless–or worse than pointless. But it's right there in the title: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, not Rock and Roll Hall of Significance.

LondonLee (#922)

Joan is OK I guess but she's never been that original. She's like a hipper Melissa Etheridge or a more punky Suzi Quatro.

roboloki (#1,724)

the year social d was snubbed but metallica was inducted is the precise moment that this institution died for me.

LloydBraun (#13,503)

I don't think Joan Jett should be inducted. Just my opinion. But yes, Erik B & Rakim for sure, the Beasties would agree..

the inductees will be:
Guns N' Roses
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Beastie Boys
Laura Nyro

walker (#189,990)

Joan Jett rocks, and if you need more proof, check out her doing this version of Crimson and Clover in 2007 or there abouts.
She is leaner, sexier, cooler and more of a rock and roll bad ass than ever.

freetzy (#7,018)

At least Ron Santo finally made it in.

Van Buren Boy (#1,233)

The RnRHoF shouldn't exist for the simple fact that it's entire existence is just an excuse for Baby Boomers (aka Jann Wenner) to get in room, pat each other on the back, and talk about how awesome and cool they are. I'm also guessing that the only reason that The Faces were inducted was to roll out the preserved corpse Rod Stewart and inject some more late 60s/early 70s music into the show.

Tulletilsynet (#333)

The problem is letting critics (other than Maura, who should actually just do the whole thing herself and I'd be happy) and industry suits have a say. Ideally you would have previous rock-'n'-roller inductees vote on new inductees, but who expects a lot of whiskey-stewed, coked-up certified geniuses to act like the Swedish Academy? (Oh wait …)

My modest proposal: let the industry types vote candidates in every year, and simultaneously let the past inductees, the rock-'n'-rollers, have a vote to throw the same number of past inductees out. Open ballot.

That would generate much better publicity every year than what happens now, which amounts to a lot of lifetime achievement awards, which, YAWN!

erikonymous (#3,231)

I agree completely with Dave, but then I also think we can dispense with pretty much every award-based institution, at least in the arts. Popularity contests should have ended with high school.

Matt (#26)

I like rock and roll.

Trilby (#3,897)

That's probably her best song, and it's not even her song, but she sure was purty. Had some attitude too. I like this better than the strip shows that some of today's divas think they have to give us.

I'll never accept the idea of Rose in the Hall Of Fame after the allegations of gambling. Hits be damned!

BadUncle (#153)

This is an on-going complaint against Halls of Fame in general. For example, the Ukulele Hall of Fame did not induct Roy Smeck – the Wizard of the Strings – until it's 3rd year.

JoshUng (#11,371)

Whether you prefer Eric B and Rakim over the Beastie Boys, can you really suggest those two deserve in over Beastie Boys? "Fame" is kind of an important part of "Hall of Fame."

Joan Jett probably should be in, but I think legally she isn't allowed in after allowing Britney Spears to cover the song in Crossroads.

Post a Comment