The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame just released their list of nominees for 2018 and, as always, it’s a hotly contested group.
Before we run through the list of musicians given the nod, let’s take a moment to acknowledge those who were snubbed. Janet Jackson and Kraftwerk, who have both been nominated in previous years, were curiously overlooked this year. Soundgarden, which lost iconic frontman Chris Cornell earlier in the year, somehow failed to make the cut.
This year features first-time nominations for a handful of artists — Dire Straits, Eurythmics, Judas Priest, The Moody Blues, Radiohead, Nina Simone, Rage Against the Machine, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe. It’s an eclectic mix of names. You would think that if bands like Dire Straits (8/1 odds) and Judas Priest (7/1) were ever going to be inducted, it would’ve happened by now.
Nina Simone (3/1) and Sister Rosetta Tharpe (19/1) are finally being paid their dues, not just for their impact on Soul and R&B (and therefore rock and roll), but for the impact their music had on the Civil Rights movement. Simone is widely regarded as one of the defining artists of her time, so an induction into the Hall of Fame seems fitting (and likely).
Bon Jovi (2/1) and LL Cool J (3/1) are also among the frontrunners to be inducted. Bon Jovi have found their way into every karaoke list ever made, so what’s stopping them from breaking through to the Hall of Fame? LL Cool J is as rock-inspired as rappers get. It’s no surprise that he’s high on the list as well.
Rage Against the Machine (4/1), the radical late-90s rap-rock group, have found a renewed significance in the age of Trump. We’ll soon experience a new wave of protest music inspired by Rage. That alone earns them a spot.
Despite all the big names, there’s one that towers above the rest — Radiohead. They tick all the boxes. They’re unique, commercially successful, and beloved by critics. Thom Yorke and company walk the delicate line between mainstream appeal and indie cred, and they do it brilliantly. This is their first nomination, and in all likelihood, it will also be their last.
We all have strong opinions on who should make it through, but unless you’re one of the 900-ish voters, you’re stuck ranting about it on the internet like me. You can, however, put some money on the line. I recommend giving Radiohead the nod along with a sprinkling on Rage Against the Machine and Nina Simone.
Only five inductees will be eternalized in the Hall of Fame. Who will make it through? Here are the odds.
Nina Simone: 2/1
Bon Jovi: 2/1
LL Cool J: 3/1
Rage Against the Machine: 4/1
The Cars: 5/1
The Zombies: 6/1
Moody Blues: 6/1
Judas Priest: 7/1
Depeche Mode: 8/1
Kate Bush: 8/1
Dire Straits: 8/1
Geils Band: 10/1
The Meters: 13/1
Rufus featuring Chaka Khan: 19/1
Sister Rosetta Tharpe: 19/1
Link Wray: 19/1
Photo credit: roninzer0 (Flickr) CC License
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