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Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013
Rock and Roll TravestyPosted Tuesday, October 2, 2007, at 1:09 PM
I love music. LOVE music.
I can't tell you how much I enjoy listening to music, but I enjoy playing and performing music even more.
My parents got me started listening to music at a very young age. In fact, I can remember sitting in front of the record player listening to Beatles records and singing along.
They were very good at getting me to listen to all kinds of different music.
I grew up listening to The Beatles, Bee Gees, Beach Boys, Chicago, Grand Funk Railroad, The Moody Blues, the list goes on and on.
One of those bands I grew up listening to continues to get a bad rap. At least in my opinion.
Chicago began its career in 1967 and released its major label debut -- Chicago Transit Authority -- in 1969.
Since then, the band has released 30 records and released 58 singles! Unbelievable numbers.
Of those 58 singles, 19 have been top 10 hits and three -- "If You Leave Me Now," "Hard To Say I'm Sorry," and "Look Away," all reached No. 1.
Of the band's 30 albums, five have reached the top of the charts.
And yet for some odd reason, Chicago keeps hitting a brick wall when it comes to being nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
For the past five years, I've lobbied (for lack of a better term) for Chicago to at least be nominated. All the while, the likes of Percy Sledge, The O'Jays, Traffic, AC/DC, The Clash, The Ramones, the Lovin' Spoonful, the Moonglows, and a host of others, have all been inducted.
This year, Madonna, Afrika Bambaataa, The Beastie Boys, Leonard Cohen, Donna Summer, The Ventures, Chic, The Dave Clark Five and John Mellencamp were nominated for induction.
What I want to know is, what gives?
Just the other day, like I have for the past five years, I e-mailed the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame reminding them of their ignorance to slight such a great musical group.
For the second time, they responded.
The first response I received must have been a few years ago. It was insignificant.
This one, however, was much more detailed. And very convoluted.
The person that e-mailed me back basically said that artists may be inducted in four categories, Performer, Early Influence, Non-Performer and side-men (whatever that means).
According to the e-mail, the selection of performers is a two-step process. Here's what they responded with:
"The only formal criteria for the performance category is that an artist has to have had their first record 25 years ago. That said, candidates are reviewed and discussed relative to their impact on this music that we broadly call rock and roll. The innovation and influence of these artists is also critical. Gold records, number one hits, and million sellers are really not appropriate standards for evalutation."
The person then explained that a committee of more than 500 people around the world (including journalists, historians, music industry management, all living inductees, musicians, etc.) vote on who is nominated.
This still doesn't answer the question.
Why has Chicago not even been nominated?
They were influential. They combined fusion with rock and roll, adding a horn section to hard rock.
I responded in kind regarding this issue and have yet to hear back from them.
As I stated in the first e-mail I sent late last week, at least I can look forward to pulling out all of my parent's Donna Summer records. Can't wait to see if they still work. What influential music it truly was.