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So by this time tomorrow, Madonna will be a member of “The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.” Before I begin my rant, let me first say that I recognize the cultural and musical impact that Madonna has made over the course of her career. I don’t often say this out loud, but I actually like several of her songs. So this isn’t about Madonna the celebrity, or Madonna the pop icon. This is about Rock and Roll.
Madonna, in spite of being many things, has never been rock and roll. Which is why I think her inclusion into this shrine taints the entire event. I look at it like this – Pele was a great soccer player – but you wouldn’t put him in the Football Hall of Fame, anymore than you would induct John McEnroe into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was a great premise – and had it stayed the course, and honored true pioneers and visionaries of rock music it could have annually recognized an artist (or two) and still been a meaningful event. But it seems that the people who operate the Hall have for years now wanted something more like the Academy Awards show than a true tribute paid for talent rendered to its genre.
This isn’t a new issue, so I’m certainly not singling out Madonna. This really goes back as far as 1990 when the inductee was Bobby Darin. Or James Brown in 1986. Pioneers? Yes, at least James Brown was that and so much more. Bobby Darin on the other hand was, in the grand scheme of things, a glorified lounge singer who had little impact on music as a whole, let alone Rock music.
No, sadly, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has become more of a Pop popularity contest, and ignores completely some of the biggest innovators and most talented contributors to the genre of rock music, like Todd Rundgren, Deep Purple, Boston, Yes, Genesis and/or Peter Gabriel, and countless others who left an indelible mark on rock and roll. Maybe I’m just mincing words here – but if you’re going to call it the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, then I want to think of (and thank) rock music and rock artists. Otherwise, call it the Music Hall of Fame, and it won’t piss me off each year when I see inductees like Miles Davis (brilliant JAZZ artist), Johnny Cash (brilliant COUNTRY artist), or Madonna (HUGE celebrity).
write by Sigmund