Hailed as “Movers. Shakers. Visionaries and inspirations that changed the way we listen to rock & roll,” the 2017 inductees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame should ensure a musically diverse induction ceremony in April.
Artists become eligible for inclusion 25 years after the release of their first album or single. Over 900 musicians, journalists and critics nominate and vote on artists who “have made their permanent mark on music and continue to influence up-and-coming performers today.” Online votes by the public are also factored into the results.
About five or six musical artists are voted into the Hall of Fame each year. Folk singer Joan Baez and the late rapper Tupac Shakur were voted into the class of 2017, along with the bands Pearl Jam, Journey, Yes, and Electric Light Orchestra.
Nile Rodgers, who co-founded the band Chic and collaborated with many performers, will receive the Award for Musical Excellence honoring artists who have “changed the course of music history, dedicated their lives to creating influential, important music infused with originality, and have achieved a level of timeless distinction.”
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is located in Cleveland, where disc jockey Alan Freed coined the term “rock ’n’ roll” and where in 1952 he staged the first rock concert. It showcases the works and artifacts of famous musicians including Elvis Presley’s three-wheeled motorcycle, guitars played by Johnny Cash and Kurt Cobain, a vest that Jefferson Airplane singer Grace Slick wore onstage at Woodstock, and Michael Jackson’s famed sparkly glove.
Many musicians have been inducted into the Hall of Fame twice, as part of a band and for their solo careers. Only Eric Clapton has been honored three times, for his work as a solo performer and with previous bands Cream and the Yardbirds.
The April 7 induction ceremony could provide the occasion for the bands Journey and Yes to perform together for the first time in many years. At any rate, it promises a great show, since the ceremony usually concludes with a huge all-star jam.
This article originally ran on January 5, 2017. It is unchanged.