It wasn't too bad in 2009, when Metallica was inducted. Run-DMC were there, and so was Jeff Beck with Jimmy Page. But the less said about the 1997 in Cleveland — the one with Crosby, Stills & Nash — the better.
But when the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony returns to Cleveland on April 14 at Public Hall, we finally get a class that even New Yorkers would drool over.
Guns N' Roses, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Beastie Boys, the Small Faces/Faces, Donovan, and Laura Nyro are all being inducted this year.
That means that not only will Cleveland host Axl, Slash, the Beasties, and some aging frat boys with socks on their dicks, but also Rod Stewart, who fronted the Faces back when they were one of the best bands on the planet.
The special awards go to Freddie King as an Early Influence, Don Kirshner gets the non-performer Ahmet Ertegun Award, and producers Cosimo Matassa, Tom Dowd, and Glyn Johns will be honored for their behind-the-scenes Musical Excellence.
Of course there's no guarantee that the big names will make it to Cleveland in April, but chances are pretty good everyone will show up, even major-league dickhead Axl Rose.
Odds aren't so good, however, that he'll perform with his old bandmates (even though he's kept the GNR name alive with half-ass membership since the original quintet broke up in the mid '90s), since he really hasn't spoken to any of them in years.
The best news here is that it's almost certain that Stewart will reunite with the remaining Faces onstage. Did we mention that they were one of the best bands on the planet during their prime?
So what do you think of this year's class? And what do you think it means for Cleveland? We can tell you one thing: GNR sure beats CSN. —Michael Gallucci