Doobie Brothers, T. Rex, Whitney Houston, Depeche Mode among the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inducties
The Doobie Brothers, T. Rex, Whitney Houston and Depeche Mode are among the artists who've been chosen for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame this year, along with industrial rockers Nine Inch Nails and late rapper The Notorious B.I.G., a.k.a. Biggie Smalls.
The Doobies, T. Rex, Houston and Biggie are all being inducted after being nominated for the first time. Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails had both previously been on the ballot twice.
In addition, famed music managers Jon Landau and Irving Azoff, who are best known for guiding the careers of Bruce Springsteen and the Eagles, respectively, will be inducted into the Rock Hall as recipients of the Ahmet Ertegun Award.
Speaking to ABC Audio, Rock Hall president and CEO Greg Harris shared his thoughts on the inductees. Regarding The Doobies, Harris said he feels that their induction, which will recognize both the Tom Johnston and the Michael McDonald eras, acknowledges the group's "impact and influence over these five decades."
As for T. Rex, Harris noted that the band was "massively influential in England with the launch of the glam-rock movement, but also in the U.S." He added, "They influenced bands like Cheap Trick, The New York Dolls, Joan Jett [and contemporary] artists like The Black Keys, and even Blink-182."
Reflecting on Houston's credentials as a Rock Hall inductee, Harris maintains that the late singer "has been highly regarded as the voice of her generation, and she's one that follows in the footsteps of those great diverse singers before her, like Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson and Aretha Franklin." He adds, "They could deliver soulful ballads and hard-hitting dance numbers, rock and roll, soul, funk all rolled together."
The other nominees for the 2020 class were Dave Matthews Band, Pat Benatar, Thin Lizzy, Todd Rundgren, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, Soundgarden, Judas Priest, MC5, Motörhead, and Kraftwerk. Dave Matthews Band received the most votes in the Rock Hall's fan poll, marking the first time in seven years that the winner of the fan vote was not chosen for induction.
The Doobie Brothers, who finished third in the fan poll, were the only one of the top-five vote-getters to be chosen for induction. Benatar, Soundgarden and Priest were in second, fourth and fifth place, respectively.
The 2020 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held Saturday, May 2, at the Public Auditorium in Cleveland, and will air live for the first time starting at 8 p.m. ET on HBO.
You can also buy tickets to see the ceremony in person starting February 27 at 10 a.m. ET. Visit RockHall.com.