Controversy
Courtney Love Unhappy with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Sure, this story is from eight years ago, but it is well worth repeating here:
Last week, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced its annual list of inductees. The news was followed by the annual list of grievances and complaints about those choices in the music business. This year, however, the opposition included a particularly high-profile and vitriolic voice, Courtney Love's.

. . .

Some in the music industry were upset that punk-rock and female acts were not represented in the winners' circle, but Ms. Love had her own ax to grind. Evidently not a fan of the New York Dolls, Black Sabbath or Lou Reed [nominees who weren't inducted that year], she lambasted the Hall of Fame in a telegram: ''How dare you fools not put Lynyrd Skynyrd, Patti Smith, or AC/DC in your Hall of Fame. Damn you to the darkest belly of the underworld. Stop.''

She goes on to demand that the items belonging to herself and her husband, Kurt Cobain, that are in the possession of the Hall of Fame's museum in Cleveland be returned: ''Any of my stuff you stole, I want back immediately. Stop. This includes any of mine or Kurt's clothes, guitars, or debris that you scavenged for. Stop. I hope that no one I know is ever inducted into your idiotic 'Hall of Fame.' ''

One wonders what will happen in 2011, when Nirvana, Cobain's old group, will most likely be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Ms. Love concludes her telegram: ''You are a sham and you deserve Bush. Stop. He probably has the same taste in music as you.''

An employee for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame said the sentiments expressed in the telegram captured the true spirit of rock 'n' roll.

Well, Michael Stipe has been inducted into the "idiotic" Hall of Fame, and he's Love's daughter's godfather, so that's at least one Hall of Famer that she knows.

For the record, Nirvana can't actually be inducted prior to the 2014 Induction Ceremony and Hole won't be eligible until two years after that.

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Has the Rock Hall reached a tipping point?
The 2008 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominations seem to have lit a fire under rock fans everywhere. At Harp Magazine, Fred Mills notes:
So much for Punk, Prog and Psych: with today’s announcement of nominees for the 2008 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame it becomes clear we’ve reached a tipping point from which a permanent downhill slide in quality seems all but inevitable.

. . .

I think there needs to be a better balance and greater deliberation put into the nomination process. Maybe lengthen the eligibility period to 30, 35 or 40 years instead of 25. Even better, why not have a two-category approach to induction whereby one set of nominees is drawn from the 25-year-criteria pool and a second set drawn from a 40-year pool of so-called Pioneers, thereby ensuring that deserving elders receive a more equitable consideration.

Bob Lefsetz also feels the temperature rising:
I wasn't even going to bother commenting about this. After the induction of Blondie and Patti Smith and the exclusion of the performance of David Lee Roth. But what's fascinating to me is the BLOWBACK! All over the Net, people aren't debating which of the nominees should get in, but who was LEFT OUT!

Donna Summer didn't go rock until '79, however much we love her, she belongs in the DISCO Hall Of Fame. Where Nile Rodgers and Chic should be enshrined also. Hell, want to honor Nile's production work with the B-52's, bringing them back from the dead, I'm all for it. But if it weren't for Ms. Summer and Chic would there have BEEN that bonfire at Comiskey Park?

And the Beastie Boys... Well, rap is a bit closer to rock than disco, but who's a bigger innovator... The Beasties or Alice Cooper?

I could go on and on about the unjust exclusions, but what's fascinating to me is the cabal which runs this rapidly sinking organization/ship/museum seems to have NO CLUE how they're fucking it up/eviscerating all its credibility.

If there are no more rockers to be inducted, DON'T!

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Roger Friedman of Fox News calls for boycott of Rolling Stone magazine
For Roger Friedman, FoxNews.com entertainment columnist and vocal Rock Hall critic, the 2008 nominations have pushed him over the edge.
[E]nough is enough. After the announcement late Friday of the nominees’ ballot for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, there’s only thing to do: Hit publisher Wenner, who controls the Rock Hall, where it hurts.

If you love Rock and Roll, stop buying Rolling Stone until the tremendous insults of the Hall of Fame are corrected.

Wenner’s nominating committee consists largely of his current and former employees from Rolling Stone (Nathan Brackett, David Fricke, Jim Henke, Joe Levy, Brian Keizer, Toure, and Anthony DeCurtis). But they have little say over who really is inducted.

Friedman then recounts the Dave Clark Five controversy from the 2007 Inductions, and reports that because of that mess they are now "guaranteed entry" in 2008.

Friedman breaks out his laundry list of artists who have been snubbed, ignored, or forgotten by the Rock Hall, any of whom he feels are more deserving than this year's nominees.

Of the new crop, I don’t have much to say that’s positive. Madonna is a steamroller because of the cult of personality. She’s not a rocker, she has a thin voice and she doesn’t write her own material. But she’s a force of nature.

There’s no stopping Madonna when she wants something. Chances are good she won’t bring Steve Bray, Patrick Leonard, William Orbit and all her writers and producers to the stage. They are Madonna.

Chic is a fun idea with great songs, but it was really producer-writer Nile Rodgers and his partner Bernard Summers who made it work as a dance group. Rodgers should be in as a hugely successful producer of music by David Bowie, Ross and others. Summers can be thanked. Chic, however, is not rock.

The rest are totally off base given the above list. Summer was a disco act. For her to get in before Ronstadt is a joke. Mellencamp at least plays rock. But he’s a minor note in the genre’s history.

Afrika Bambaataa and the Beastie Boys: Are they kidding? Even the latter must be laughing. They had one big hit, "You’ve Got to Fight for Your Right to Party." The former, while I’m sure quite lovely, is a record-scratcher with a great name. Each of these belongs in a Rap Hall of Fame.

Roger Friedman gives voice to a large group of rock fans who aren't ready to move on to the next generation of Hall of Famers before honoring those who came before them, and also are weary of the Rock Hall's continued expansion of the definition of "rock and roll."

Update: Before Roger Friedman calls for a boycott of Rolling Stone, he might want to make sure his website doesn't accept advertising from them (see below).

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Jann Wenner and vote fixing
The book, Rolling Stone Magazine: The Uncensored History recounts an interesting story about Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Founder and Chairman Jann Wenner:
In 1987, Rolling Stone devoted a special issue to the "100 Best Albums" of the past twenty years. Critics were polled; results were tabulated. At the top of the list was Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Second was Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols, an album which sold less than one tenth as many copies as Sgt. Pepper.

The results angered Jann. Though he had never actually listened to more than a few minutes of the Sex Pistols' record, he could not fathom its lofty rank in the poll. Besides, he demanded, "where's Loggins and Messina on this poll? Where's Hotel California?"

When the magazine ran its "100 Best Singles" special issue a year later, the editor took matters into his own hands. He ordered music editor David Wild to put singles by his friends Billy Joel and Foreigner's Mick Jones on the list. Then Jann personally manipulated the tabulations, a puppetmaster jerking his subjects up and down the list. Thus did the deathless classics "Uptown Girl" (by Joel) and "I Want to Know What Love Is" (by Foreigner) receive the respective designations of 99 and 54, while Stevie Wonder's "Superstition" -- originally given the 6 rank -- languished at 73.

Sound familiar?
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