|Classic KFMC Rock News|
Ringo Starr playing with Green Day. Joan Jett singing with Dave Grohl and Miley Cyrus. It's the kind of stuff that only happens at the annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, held over the weekend in Cleveland, Ohio. As usual, the very, very long night featured a mix of once-in-a-lifetime performances, emotional speeches and plenty of rock and roll attitude.
The show opened with inductees Joan Jett & the Blackhearts walking onstage to perform "Bad Reputation." They were then joined by Dave Grohl for "Cherry Bomb," the song made famous by Jett's previous band The Runaways. Next, it was "Crimson & Clover," performed with Grohl and Tommy James, the man who wrote it, not to mention Miley Cyrus.
John Mayer inducted his all-time idol, the late blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, and his band Double Trouble. Mayer's eloquent speech was built around the concept that Vaughan, who died in a helicopter crash in 1990, was "the ultimate guitar hero," and introduced blues to the MTV generation by presenting it in a modern way. He also revealed that it was Vaughan, who battled substance abuse only to emerge clean and sober, who inspired him to reject drugs and alcohol throughout his career.
Vaughan's brother Jimmie Vaughan of the Fabulous Thunderbirds accepted on his brother's behalf, saying, "I just want you to know I couldn't be more proud of him. He was the most wonderful, cool, talented little brother anybody could ever have." Then, Vaughan, Double Trouble, Mayer and Gary Clark Jr. performed Vaughan's hits "Pride and Joy" and "Texas Flood," as well as Jimmie Vaughan's 1994 tribute to his brother, "Six Strings Down."
The most emotional moment of the evening came during the induction of the late Lou Reed, already a member of the Rock Hall as part of the Velvet Underground. His longtime friend Patti Smith, herself a Hall of Fame member, inducted him, and choked up while reminiscing about their friendship. "Thank you for brutally and benevolently injecting your poetry into music," she said. Then, Reed's partner of 21 years, artist and musician Laurie Anderson, took the stage for a speech in which she remembered Lou, not just as a great artist, but as the man who loved her, and who died in her arms.
The other inductees included The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, which helped electric blues cross over to a wider audience in the sixties, and the R&B vocal group the "5" Royales, whose members all unfortunately had passed away. They were the first to to record "Dedicated to the One I Love," later a hit for the Shirelles and the Mamas & the Papas. J. Geils Band singer Peter Wolf inducted the Paul Butterfield Blues band, while legendary guitarist Steve Cropper inducted the Royales.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will air May 30 on HBO.