More harping from Uncle E on the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame: “Lenny, you should be ashamed of yourself!”
Dave Marsh, long time writer for the reprehensible Rolling Stone magazine and part of the Hall’s nominating committee, says, “Kiss will never be a great band, and I have done my share to keep them off the ballot.”
I need to state I have never really been a fan of KISS, but that doesn’t mean that their influence on rock and roll in general shouldn’t be recognized. If there is a band more recognized, or more revered by millions of fans around the world, then I’m not aware of it. The ironic thing is that KISS gets more recognition and their fan base gets more and more rabid each time the band is snubbed (ditto Rush), so I guess the Hall is doing their pocketbooks a big favor.
In a great article by Larry Getlen entitled Why the Rock and Roll hall of fame misses the point about Rock and Roll, he states “Who makes these ridiculous decisions? What kind of “rocker” thinks Madonna and Chic are rock icons, but KISS is not? And, maybe the most important question: is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame anything more than just a self-serving organization designed to allow a generation of like-minded (and close-minded) music critics and industry veterans a chance to put on tuxedos — in themselves as un-rock-and-roll as it gets — and pat themselves on the back for their collective cultural supremacy?”
I shouldn’t be pissed, or surprised. Really. The Hall Of Fame is run by senior citizens who are desperately unable to think beyond their own pathetic experience. These are the kids in high school who hung out in the smokers pit and pretended to smoke cloves, but took a bath in the communal sink before they left so their mommies wouldn’t smell it on ‘em. Poseurs.
And to add more fuel to the fire, here’s the list of a few names of those on the nominating committee this year:
Steven Van Zandt
Landau, DeCurtis, Marsh and Robertson being here are no surprise. Old Rolling Stone hacks and golfing buddies of Jann Wenner, all. The others, especially Stein and most especially Lenny Kaye, ought to know better. And Van Zandt, Springsteen guitarist and Soprano actor, for all of his lobbying regarding Nugget era garage bands, should also. And Fricke I’ve always kind of respected as a dude that knows what he’s talking about, but….
I know what you’re thinking. You, too, are a snob Mr. E. If you were on the nominating committee you, too, would simply nominate your favorites and ignore the rest. Although I have never purchased a Madonna album I can recognize her importance on popular music (even though I don’t consider he “rock and roll” by any stretch of the imagination.
So how do we fix it? One blog recommends giving the public a vote for one nominee a year. Decent possible solution, but the problem is that the voting committee is made up of 500 old spineless farts that are more concerned with pleasing their tuxedo and Moet et Chandon sipping peers than doing the right thing and voting their conscience, voting based on who deserves it.
I look at the Hall Of Fame as I do the Grammys. If I want to know who currently hold the title for “The Crappiest Bands On The Planet” I watch the awards ceremony. Granted, there have been some great bands that have gotten in, and my list certainly doesn’t mirror everyone’s, but common sense should be a factor, fer Christ’s sake! Wenner and his stodgy old cronies need to grow up and grow a pair before, like his magazine, the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame becomes just as irrelevant.