Curious cases from the history of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

We are talking about one of the main musical annual musical events - the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. How did this ceremony turn from an ordinary TV show into a real museum and why were some musicians not eager to come to the awards?

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame - interesting facts, no-shows and refusal to participate

In the early years 1980s it becomes clear: rock music is getting stronger affects on people's lives. Some musicians were recognized more oftenthan important political figures, the creativity of some of them helped people to cope with problems and get back on their feet. The moment has come when necessary in a certain way fix for a singer or group the status of musical geniuses. For this purpose, they came up with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Since 1986, it has annually celebrated the most popular and talented musicians. At this ceremony were marked the following artists and bands: Michael Jackson, Queen, ABBA, Elton John, Madonna, Elvis Presley, Whitney Houston and many others.

In the music world, this rewarding in the Hall of Fame honorary place of one of the most important events. To be nominated for entry into the Hall of Fame, performers or bands must exist as a musical unit 25 years. Nominees at such a holiday have the opportunity to hear opinion colleagues about themselves and their work, say a few words about his career and other musicians, fulfill the most popular hits and participate in the musical improvisation with other artists.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame outside
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame outside

In fact, herself idea hold a similar event, and even every year, good. But just like in the world itself show business, there were also many unpleasant stories and scandals. Some musicians refused come to the awards, others arranged sabotage at the ceremony itself, the third and all ignored invitation. But we'll start from the very Beginning at and try to figure out where arose the idea of the Hall of Fame and why some performers are on it didn't come.


In 1982 TV producer Bruce Brandwen an interesting idea came to mind: to organize show, which will be called "Kings and Queens of Rock and Roll". He embodied the idea, and thanks to his production company Black Tie Network Brandwen helped many futures succeed rock stars, filmed their solo numbers, awarded them in various nominations. All this resulted in a paid TV show. One of Brandwen's colleagues suggested to him other transfer name - "Rock and Roll Hall of Fame". Producer this name Likedand he corrected program show to match the new status. He and his team came up with regulations for musicians who want to participate, created a small Museum (it was gradually to be replenished with various personal things musicians who had great meaning for the fans) and made a tip commissions, which will directly evaluate nominees.

Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame was originally non-commercial project, but Brandwen later signed the contract with Black Tie for five years. Out of status show The hall has turned into a serious musical eventthat happened every year.

Everything was fine, except for one thing: Brandwen did not have a well-established connections with the music industry. With the aim of attract musical representatives he hired David BrownBob Dylan's lawyer. The last one in turn called renowned music producer Ahmet Ertegunwho became the head of the Hall. Ertegun found lawyers, executives from different record labels and created from them commission. Among them was Susan Evans, who wrote to the music magazine publisher "Rolling Stone (concurrently one of the big people in the world of show business) Jann Wenner. He refused to join committee to nominate candidates, but wanted to become one of the directors. It is easy to guess that, hiring huge number of people, Brandwen stopped completely to control own project, and this later became big problem.


Ever since Ahmet Ertegun, Yann Wenner and other celebrities of the world of show business became work in the Hall of Fame, project as television transmission began to develop slower. Record label executives weren't interested broadcast this event, they focused on museum aspect of the idea. Some of them even contacted with ex-wife Elvis Presleyso that donated some of his things for the project. These things were meant to be exhibited on public display in a small house in the city brooklyn.

Ahmet Ertegun, one of the main creators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Ahmet Ertegun, one of the main creators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)

Gradually it turned from a small modest museum to a grander one project. In 1985 the group like-minded people from Cleveland (that's where the disc jockey Alan Freed coined and introduced the word "rock'n'roll") wrote a letter to Hall with an offer create big museum in their city.

Leaders felt that this sentence can become extremely profitable a business. They did very cunning way. In addition to the guys from Cleveland, they wrote groups and from others cities such as Philadelphia and Memphis. Why do they end up chose Cleveland? Just in this city create a similar institution in comparison with other settlements was cheaper. Besides, representatives in Cleveland said that if, after all, a musical Museum, the mayor's office will provide financial support for more than fifty million dollars.

Jann Wenner, one of the main creators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Jann Wenner, one of the main creators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame


For many years the project existed in germinal condition. But finally, having finished the hard work of creating physical materialization of the Hall, debut Rock and Roll Hall of Fame awards took place in 1986 at the Waldorf Astoria in New York. Everything that's happening recorded on film, but on TV not shown. The same thing happened in 1987. Why absent broadcast? Wenner and Ertegun are great understoodthat such an event should be shown by TV, but the problem arose with the former leader the Brandwen project. Still acted the contract with Brandwen's company "Black Tie". The producer himself was against broadcast of this event, because the creation of the project and its display on TV was his idea, but subordinates due to their amateur performances took total control over the project, and now he belonged them. Therefore, other companies did not have the right broadcast rewarding. Wenner and Ertegun had to waituntil the expiration date agreements with "Black Tie". Brandwen later explained:

“After five years, I was told that my time was up and I no longer have the right to ban the broadcast.”

Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

In 1988 Brandwen filed in court on Wenner and Ertegun for violation contract, but realized that won't win case, and agreed without trial to give everything the rights to Zal Venner and his company. Advocate Wenner Ben Needell said:

“We managed to win the Hall of Fame from Brandwen. In fact, it turned out to be even easier than I thought.”

And now we will tell you about the most strange situations that took place at this festival.

Diana Ross, 1988

Original cast "Supremes" has been at odds with each other since 1967, when the group changed its name to Diana Ross & the Supremes. Ross, Mary Wilson and Cindy Birdsong last performed together in March 1983 at the concert dedicated to the 25th anniversary «Motown Records".

In 1986, Mary Wilson published her memoirs "Dreamgirl: My Life as a Supreme", where she gave a portrait of Ross in negative colors. Two years later "Supremes" were awarded in the Hall of Fame, but Ross was not present there. She later said that she missed the ceremony because she was consumed motherhood (she had given birth to a son three months earlier), but many assumedthat she didn't come because bad relations with the rest of the group.

Diana Ross (Diana Ross) in her youth
Diana Ross (Diana Ross) in her youth

Paul McCartney, 1988

Relations between former members The Beatles in 1988 also took shape not easy. A few years before Yoko Ono, George Harrison and Ringo Starr are great had a fight with Paul McCartneywho decided to skip rewarding in the Hall of Fame. Mike Love said that day:

"It's sad that some members of The Beatles missed this event this evening."

Photo of The Beatles, 1960
Photo "The Beatles", 1960

Jerry Garcia, 1994

Frontman American team "Grateful Dead" did not appear at the awards, reportedly because he was against the whole idea of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Rest the participants did not agree with his opinion and went on stage with cardboard Garcia.

Jerry Garcia at one of his performances
Jerry Garcia at one of his performances

Levon Helm, 1994

In 1994 many musicians didn't come to the Hall of Fame. Band member "The Band" Levon Helm was absent from the ceremony due to a difficult relationship with fellow band member Robbie Robertson. Him, Rick Danko, Garth Hudson in the Hall after all appeared and sang a song together "The Weight". This is the only time Robertson has performed with former bandmates since the concert "The Last Waltz"i.e. since 1976.

Eric Burdon, 1994

Frontman "The Animals" Eric Burdon did not come for his own award in 1994, since at that time he had concert in Germany. He made up for it with 16 yearswhen performed "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place" at a ceremony in honor of the songwriter Barry Manna and Cynthia Vail.

Rod Stewart, 1994

Behind two days before the awards in the Hall of Fame in 1994 in Los Angeles, there was a powerful earthquake. British singer Rod Stuart should have attended eventbut missed the ceremony. He explained his absence in the following way:

“The day the LA earthquake hit, my two kids were all alone and terrified. I couldn't leave them because they were scared to death."

Rod Stewart, his wife Penny Lancaster and their children
Rod Stewart, his wife Penny Lancaster and their children


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