The votes are in and counted, and from the list of 15 nominees, six have been chosen for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014. There really weren't any big surprises, unless you count the fact that four of the six were first-time nominees. As usual, there is much discussion of who didn't get in and who should have, but for now we'll just take a look at who did.
Fans of KISS have long been among the most vocal about the absence of their favorite band from even being considered for induction into the Rock Hall. That fact did not go unnoticed by Hall of Fame CEO Joel Peresman. "The KISS Army has descended on Cleveland in recent years, and we've gotten thousands of letters. They also did extremely well in the public vote." KISS got their first nomination in 2010.
Already in the Hall as a member of Genesis, Peter Gabriel was chosen on his first nomination as a solo artist. The Rock Hall announcement said, "When the rest of rock was simplifying in the new wave days, the former Genesis frontman blended synthesizers and a signature gated drum sound with an emotional honesty learned from soul music to create a sensibility that would influence artists from U2 and Arcade Fire to Depeche Mode."
Oddsmakers had favored Nirvana being inducted their first time out, and they were. The trio of Kurt Cobain, Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic have been credited with setting the stage for the grunge revolution in the '90s. In the words of the formal announcement, "Nirvana remain an enduring influence and challenge – proof that the right band with the right noise can change the world."
The multi-genre vocalist was surely a sentimental favorite after being forced into retirement by Parkinson's disease this year, not that Linda Ronstadt wouldn't otherwise merit induction. "She is the only artist to win a Grammy Award in the categories of pop, country, Mexican American and Tropical Latin," noted the Rock Hall's formal announcement. "That diversity reflects her approach to singing: she was always looking for the best song, regardless of category."
Hall & Oates
Daryl Hall and John Oates describe their genre as rock n' soul. The Hall of Fame announcement of their induction fleshed that out. "Deeply rooted in lush Philly soul, Hall and Oates mixed smooth vocal harmonies and the romantic vulnerability of soul with edgy hard rock and new wave riffs to create some of the finest pop music of the 1980s."
Cat Stevens (now known as Yusuf Islam) ended a long period of musical inactivity with a new album in 2009 and several tours since then. The induction announcement noted the artist's progression "from teenage London art school songsmith to introspective cornerstone of the 1970s singer-songwriter movement" and praised his courage in leaving his success behind and dropping out of the music business after converting to Islam.
Those other awards
E Street Band will join their main man, Bruce Springsteen in the Hall by virtue of receiving the Award for Musical Excellence. The Ahmet Ertegun Awards (named after the founder of Atlantic Records) go to longtime managers of The Beatles (Brian Epstein) and The Rolling Stones (Andrew Loog Oldham).
The 29th Rock Hall induction ceremony is April 10, 2014 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn NY. HBO will record it for broadcast in May.