Update: Chad Channing Will Not be Inducted Into the Rock Hall with Nirvana
Chad Channing, the band’s former drummer who played on Bleach, had been led to believe that he was being inducted with the band as well. Unfortunately that is not the case. Channing passed along to Radio.com this text message that the Rock Hall sent to Nirvana’s management today :
Can you tell whoever looks after Chad Channing that he isn’t being inducted… It is just Dave, Krist and Kurt.
So how did we get here, where four months after the inductees were announced, that a text message from the Rock Hall is the only confirmation of which band members from Nirvana are actually being inducted?
Ever since Nirvana was nominated in October, there has been speculation as to which members might be honored. Both Chad Channing and Pat Smear appeared on important Nirvana albums so it would not have been a surprise if they were included, especially given the record of previous inductions (see the Red Hot Chili Peppers for a recent comparable example).
So why is the Rock Hall intentionally withholding that information?
Tom Lane relayed a story from former Nominating Committee member Jeff Tamarkin, where in 1994 the Grateful Dead told the Hall of Fame that “all or none” would be inducted, so the Rock Hall gave in and put in all 12 members. Knowing that the Rock Hall has been flexible on this issue, Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons tried to negotiate getting additional Kiss members in this year by using their induction ceremony performance as leverage. The Rock Hall has thus far called their bluff and is moving ahead without a performance by the band, and disappointing fans in the process.
By drawing a hard line with Kiss, there is now a bright spotlight on the Rock Hall’s process for choosing which members get inducted. As with most controversial issues with the Rock Hall, they would be more respected if they were open, straightforward and consistent with their rules. Right now, as we have seen with Chad Channing, it’s the opposite of all of those things.