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On March 29th, Brooklyn’s Barclays Center will host the 34th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. Before next weekend’s event, take a moment to learn about the seven artists being inducted this year.
This English rock band got its start in the ‘70s, but it was in the ‘80s that it made waves at pop radio, with hits including “Just Like Heaven” (1987) and “Lovesong” (1989). The band is perhaps best known for its influence on goth culture, due to frontman Robert Smith’s distinctive all-black getups and disheveled dark hair. This year is the 30th anniversary of The Cure’s defining album, Disintegration, so the band is playing the album in full at some upcoming shows.
In the 21st century, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame gradually expanded the genres of music it would include. Janet Jackson, the youngest sibling in the legendary Jackson family, is distinctly not a rock musician, but her longstanding influence on pop and R&B is more than remarkable enough to qualify her for induction. She has now sold 100 million records around the world and scored 10 number-one Billboard Hot 100 singles.
Both on her own and with the band that brought her to fame, Stevie Nicks has shaped rock and pop music for the better. Her signature contribution to legendary band Fleetwood Mac, “Dreams,” is as inescapable in bars and on the radio today as it was when it first came out in the ‘70s. Her solo ‘80s hit “Edge of Seventeen” is similarly omnipresent. This isn’t her first Hall of Fame rodeo: in 1998, Fleetwood Mac was inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Among this year’s seven inductees, Radiohead has had the shortest career. Following its 1993 hit “Creep,” the band received critical praise with its 1995 sophomore album The Bends. It was with 1997’s OK Computer, though, that the band achieved legendary status: the album has variously been called the best of the ‘90s, the best of the past 20 years, and the best of the past 25 years. The album’s 2000 follow-up, Kid A, was also named the best of the 2000s by many sources.
Although many legendary rock bands go through significant lineup changes after their peak years of success, Def Leppard’s lineup has remained the same since 1992. This lineup includes drummer Rick Allen, one of the few one-armed drummers in rock history. The loss of his arm actually came before the band’s most commercially successful period, which birthed the band’s signature song, “Pour Some Sugar on Me.”
Roxy Music’s career was shorter than most of its fellow inductees, not to mention most influential rock bands. In the film More Than This: The Story of Roxy Music, the band’s self-titled 1972 debut album is credited with influencing punk, glam rock, and new wave, but by 1982, the band had dissolved. It nevertheless achieved three number-one albums and top-ten singles in the UK, but its biggest legacy may lie in the subsequent solo career of early member Brian Eno, one of the most influential producers in popular music history.
Among this year’s inductees, The Zombies’ career began earliest, in 1962. The band’s seven-year original run was also the shortest-lived among this year’s inductees; however, the band reunited three times after 1990 and is currently active. The second of the band’s two ‘60s albums, Odyssey and Oracle, ranks within the Top 100 of Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time (on which many other inductees have albums included).
You can watch a full broadcast of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony April 27th on HBO.