“Long live rock” reads the bright red sign outside the doors Rock & Roll Hall of Fame museum in Cleveland. Since the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s first group of inductees was honored in 1986, artists from around the world have been recognized for their part in the history of rock ‘n’ roll music. (The museum opened in 1995.)
Artists become eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first record; criteria include their influence, significance and overall contribution to the development of rock ‘n’ roll music. As Rock & Roll Hall of Fame notes, “Factors such as an artist’s musical influence on other artists, length and depth of career and body of work, innovation and superiority in style and technique are considered.” A select group of voters – consisting of journalists, academics, producers and various other members of the music industry – choose from a list of nominees. Each year, five to seven performers are admitted.
The Rock Hall’s nomination papers have occasionally struggled to be inclusive over the years. (For example, women make up a small fraction of the hall’s inmates.) The organization has also been subject to criticism from those who feel that the definition of rock ‘n’ roll is more fluid than it should be, since hip-hop, country and other styles of music have been honored.
But Rock Hall President Greg Harris has framed this as an opportunity for growth.
“If you look at the nominating committee, it’s evolved over the years and they express a wide range of influences and backgrounds,” he said. Variety in 2020. “It’s a lot healthier than casual fans would think. It’s a very robust and thoughtful group that represents many points of view, with people being added all the time, bringing in new perspectives from all eras, genres, races and lifestyles. ” Hundreds of artists have been inducted into the hall over the decades. But dozens more have not. We take a look below at 136 artists who are not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and who have yet to achieve “rock’s highest honor.”
137 artists not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Many have shared their thoughts on possible induction.