Breaking down the 2021 class of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s 2021 class is one of the busiest in history. So much so that you might actually forget everyone in it.

Thirteen inductees will be honored in a ceremony at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland on October 30. We’ve taken the time to break down each of the legendary figures that will be celebrated in less than two weeks:

Carole King (Photo by Michael Putland / Getty Images)Getty Images

Carole king

Category: Interpreter

Eligible since: 1986

Applications: 2

Listening essential: “Tapestry” (1971)

Presenter: Taylor Swift

Why she enters: King was first inducted into the Rock Hall non-performing category for her writing alongside Gerry Goffin. But fans have also long been clamoring for King’s induction as a performer. And who can blame them? King’s solo career is peppered with classic songs and albums, evidenced by the famous 1971 “Tapestry”, widely regarded as one of the greatest albums in musical history.

Foo fighters

Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins of Foo Fighters. (Kevin Mazur)Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

Foo fighters

Category: Interpreter

Inducted Members: Dave Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Rami Jaffee, Nate Mendel, Chris Shiflett, Pat Smear

Eligible since: 2021

Applications: 1

Listening essential: “Color and Shape” (1997)

Presenter: Paul McCartney

Whey they’re going: Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl has already helped change music history with Nirvana (he was inducted with the band in 2014). But Foo Fighters has become a staple of the grunge era, establishing a level of consistency and longevity rarely seen in modern music. It’s no exaggeration to say that the Foo Fighters have carried the torch of rock music for the past two decades.

Go-Go's

The Go-Go’s (Vicki Berndt)

Go-Go

Category: Interpreter

Inducted Members: Charlotte Caffey, Belinda Carlisle, Gina Schock, Kathy Valentine, Jane Wiedlin

Eligible since: 2006

Applications: 1

Listening essential: “Beauty and Rhythm” (1982)

Presenter: Drew barrymore

Why they enter: You can rarely utter a phrase that sums up an artist’s worth at Rock Hall. Go-Goes have been as essential as any act in establishing the New Wave as a formidable genre while also taking on the mainstream of girl-power.

Jay-Z sports his iconic Yankees cap as he takes the stage.

Jay-Z (Scott Gries)Getty Images

Jay Z

Category: Interpreter

Eligible since: 2021

Applications: 1

Listening essential “Reasonable doubt” (1996)

Presenter: To be determined

Why he enters: Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter didn’t release his first album until he was 26, which is old in the hip-hop years. But since that time he’s been the most consistent, influential, and arguably the best rapper alive. Jay-Z also accomplished the rare feat of surpassing the hip hop genre to become a pop culture icon.

Tina turner

Tina Turner (Gie Knaeps)Getty Images

Tina turner

Category: Interpreter

Eligible since: 1990

Applications: 2

Listening essential: “What does love have to do with it” (1984)

Presenter: Angela Bassett

Why she enters: Tina Turner’s career can be divided into two parts. She and Ike Turner were rock and roll pioneers, and were inducted into Rock Hall as a duo in 1991. But after the fallout of their marriage, Turner reappeared as one of the greatest pop forces of the 1980s. Its story is one of the greatest comeback tales in the history of music.

Todd Rundgren performs at Canyon Club

Todd Rundgren (Photo by Scott Dudelson / Getty Images)Getty Images

Todd Rundgren

Category: Interpreter

Eligible since: 1996

Applications: 3

Listening essential: “Something anything?” (1972)

Presenter: To be determined

Why he enters: After careers with the Nazz and Utopia, Todd Rundgren became one of the greatest songwriters and producers of pop music, highlighted by his hit album “Something / Anything?” While Rundgren could have continued to make pop hits with ease, he instead focused on creating the kind of music he desired, consistently staying ahead of musical trends.

Kraftwerk

Kraftwerk (Photo by ROBERT ATANASOVSKI / AFP via Getty Images)AFP via Getty Images

Kraftwerk

Inducted Members: Karl Bartos, Wolfgang Flür, Ralf Hütter, Florian Schneider

Category: Early influence

Eligible since: 1995

Applications: 6

Listening essential: “Trans-European Express” (1977)

Presenter: To be determined

Why they enter: Kraftwerk’s influence on popular music is immeasurable. As pioneers of electronic music, Kraftwerk shaped the modern model of all dance music with the band’s influence felt in synth-pop, pop art, hip hop, krautrock and many other genres.

Charley patton

Category: Early influence

Eligible since: 1986

Listening essential: “Screamin ‘and Hollerin’ the Blues: The Worlds of Charley Patton” (2001)

Presenter: To be determined

Why he enters: Patton was the first blues star, making him one of the most important musical figures of the 20th century. Patton’s work would influence everyone from Robert Johnson and Son House to Muddy Waters and Howlin ‘Wolf.

Gil Scott Heron - Somerset House Summer Series

Gil Scott Heron (Simone Joyner)Getty Images

Gil Scott-Heron

Category: Early influence

Eligible since: 1995

Listening essential: “Winter in America” ​​(1974)

Presenter: To be determined

Why he enters: Scott-Heron’s street poetry made him one of the main voices of Black Experience in America in the 1970s. His social and political positions, often focused on blues, jazz and soul music, presaged work. hip hop from artists like Public Enemy, Boogie Down Productions and Tupac Shakur, among others.

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