British rock, female artists dominate Rock Hall of Fame induction

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Musicians and fans gathered in New York City on Friday for a night of British band nostalgia mixed with calls for more inclusion of women as Janet Jackson, Stevie Nicks and The Cure were inducted into the 34th Rock and Roll Hall of Fame class.

Inductee Janet Jackson speaks onstage during the 2019 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Brooklyn, New York, U.S., March 29, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Segar

Nicks, who made history on Friday as the first woman inducted twice into the prestigious group, kicked off the night with a performance of some of her biggest hits, such as “Stand Back” and “Edge of Seventeen.” She was inducted in 1998 as a member of rock band Fleetwood Mac.

“She’s so wise and serene. She sees all the romance and drama in the world and she celebrates it,” said singer Harry Styles, who introduced Nicks on stage for her induction.

However, one of the standout moments of the evening was when Jackson, 52, took the stage and called on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame committee to induct more female artists during the annual ceremony. She also acknowledged her musical family for their impact on popular culture.

“Never in a million years did I expected to follow in their footsteps. Tonight your baby sister has made it,” said Jackson, who did not perform at the ceremony. “And Rock and Roll Hall of Fame please, in 2020, induct more women.”

Singer Janelle Monae dubbed Jackson the “the legendary queen of black girl magic” for hits such as “What Have You Done For Me Lately” and “Escapade” and said she was the blueprint for creating socially conscious music.

“We celebrate you for giving us memories that we wish we could bottle up and save for the next lifetime,” Monae said. “History is not complete without you, Janet.”

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which is located in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, sends ballots to more than 1,000 artists, historians and members of the music industry to select inductees. Artists are eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first recording.

The 2019 list of inductees was largely dominated by British artists, featuring bands such as The Zombies, Roxy Music, Def Leppard and Radiohead, who did not perform during the show.

The Cure performed hits such as “Just Like Heaven,” while Def Leppard ended the night with a rocked-out jam session that featured classics “Photograph” and “Pour Some Sugar On Me.”

Jackson declined to take questions from reporters and did not mention the “Leaving Neverland” documentary on cable channel HBO about her late brother, Michael Jackson.

The 2019 induction ceremony will be broadcast on HBO on April 27 at 8 p.m. EDT.

Reporting by Gina Cherelus; Editing by Paul Tait


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