Madonna, the Beastie Boys, the Dave Clark Five, Leonard Cohen, Afrika Bambaataa, John Mellencamp, the Ventures, Donna Summer, and Chic have been nominated for induction into the 2008 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Metallica's absence from the list of nominees is downright shocking. Every act nominated today deserves their nomination, although I’m not sure what took so long for Donna Summer to receive her's. Unfortunately, only five of the acts will actually get inducted.
Here are the acts that I think should be inducted this year:
1. Madonna: This will cause a lot of debate among her detractors, who have been trying to convince the rest of the world that Madonna is irrelevant every year since 1983. A string of top ten singles – which started with “Borderline” in 1984, and has continued all the way to “Hung Up” in 2005 – will most likely win the voters over. “Live to Tell,” “Like a Prayer,” “Ray of Light,” and “Don’t Tell Me,” all records that Madonna co-wrote and co-produced, remain some of the best crafted pop singles ever recorded. The only thing going against Madonna is her influence on creating such disastrous pop-tarts as Stacie Q, Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, and Gwen Stefani.
2. Donna Summer: Donna Summer may not have had Madonna's longetivity, but her musical output remains solid. “Love to Love You Baby,” “I Feel Love,” “Last Dance,” and “Bad Girls” remain some of the most orgasmic hits ever made. Besides the production on her hits, nobody could deny Ms. Summer’s amazing vocal ability. Both of these factors should get her inducted in 2008. The only thing Ms. Summer has going against her is the fact that disco music still isn’t taken seriously and Donna Summer has always been considered the Queen of Disco.
3. The Beastie Boys: The group released their first album in 1982, opened up for Madonna’s Virgin Tour in 1985, and scored their breakthrough album, Licensed to Ill, in 1986. Songs such as “Fight for Your Right,” “Sabotage,” and “Intergalactic” remain some of the best party songs of the past two decades. They are also a significant crossover group who have enjoyed success on the pop, dance, and R&B charts. Unlike Madonna and Donna Summer, I can’t think of a reason they wouldn’t be inducted.
4. John Mellencamp: In 1982, when he was simply known as “John Cougar,” he released two of the greatest singles of all time back to back: “Hurt So Good” and “Jack and Diane.” He continued to release a string of great (and successful) singles including “Pink Houses” (1983), “The Authority Song” (1984), “Small Town”(1985), “Paper in Fire” (1987), “Again Tonight” (1992), “Wild Night” (1994), and “Key West Intermezzo” (1996). The only thing going against John Mellencamp is the fact that some music critics still give him the cold shoulder after all these years.
5. Chic: If Madonna and Donna Summer are going to get inducted, then so is Chic. Perhaps they should just move the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to West Hollywood this year! Besides producing such memorable hit singles such as “Le Freak” and “Good Times,” they introduced the world to one of the greatest vocalists of all time, Luther Vandross. Like Donna Summer, they were part of the anti-Disco backlash and this could make them wait even another year. Chic has been nominated in 2003, 2006 and 2007 but still hasn’t been inducted.