My 2012 Picks for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

The 2012 nominees for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame have been released and there are a lot of good choices.

Here’s the list:

  • Beastie Boys
  • The Cure
  • Donovan
  • Eric B. & Rakim
  • Guns N’ Roses
  • Heart
  • Joan Jett and The Blackhearts
  • Freddie King
  • Laura Nyro
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Rufus with Chaka Khan
  • The Small Faces/The Faces
  • The Spinners
  • Donna Summer
  • War

According to the rules set by the RnR HoF, to be eligible for nomination, “an individual artist or band must have released its first single or album at least 25 years prior to the year of nomination.” That means the 2012 nominees must have released their first recording no later than 1986.

Looking at these people, they have certainly left their mark on the music industry, influencing a lot of other artists throughout the years.

But in the end, only 5 will actually be inducted. If I were on the voting committee, these are the 5 that would get my vote and why:

  • The Beastie Boys – Over the years, the Beasties have constantly evolved and pushed the boundaries of what hip hop music is.

    They started out as a punk band in 1979, but when Licensed to Ill was released in 1986, they had transitioned to incorporating rap into their sound.

    It was the first rap album to reach #1 on Billboard. Even today, their sound influences other artists.


  • The Cure – Robert Smith and co. helped meld together the worlds of punk, new wave and pop into a sound that even bands today try to emulate.

    They are often considered one of the forefathers of the gothic rock scene, and even today, you can hear a lot of their influence in the emo band scene.


  • Heart – Their influence on the history of rock music, especially in relation to opening doors for female musicians, is unquestionable.

    In the male-dominated 70s rock scene, the Wilson sisters managed to chart with hits like “Crazy on You” and “Barracuda.” They came back strong in the mid-to-late 80s with hits like “These Dreams” and “What About Love?”

    In my mind, they should have already been inducted into the Hall of Fame.


  • Red Hot Chili Peppers – Formed in the early 80s, this is another band that has often evolved their sound and in the process, influenced legions of future bands.

    Though 1989’s Mother’s Milk was the first RHCP album to chart (largely assisted by the cover of Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground”), I feel that it wasn’t until 1991’s Blood Sugar Sex Magik that the band really broke through. The band closed out the decade by releasing another landmark album with Californication in 1999.

    Even today, they continue to record and tour, just with less frequency. Definitely a band worthy of induction.


  • The Spinners – One of the biggest soul groups of the 70s,The Spinners had many hits, including “I’ll Be Around,” “Could It Be I’m Falling in Love,” and “Then Came You,” a duet with Dionne Warwick that was the first chart-topping hit for both music acts.

    Their Philly-Motown sound has influenced the R&B and soul music genres ever since.


I really wanted to add Guns N’Roses this list but I decided not to based on the band’s timeline. They didn’t even form until 1985 and barely made the 25-year requirement cut-off by releasing the Live ?!*@ Like a Suicide EP in 1986. An EP, it should be noted, that only had four songs, two of which were cover songs.

It wasn’t until 1987 that they released the landmark album, Appetite for Destruction. Based on that, I don’t feel they really should’ve been nominated until next year for the R’n’R HoF Class of 2013.

So who do you think should be inducted this year? Let me know in comments.

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About zengrrl

I'm Michelle Snow, the writer and creator of Zengrrl. I write about travel, entertainment, women's issues, health, body positivity, and more, both for this blog and freelance. I have also authored/co-authored four guidebooks on Orlando and Florida. If you aren't already following me, the links are below, as well as on the top right of this page. Thanks!

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