Mary J. Blige, Cher Just Gave Rock Hall of Fame a Boost

Critics say number of female inductees has been low, but this year's group includes the 2 big names
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 22, 2024 6:42 AM CDT
Mary J. Blige, Cher, Ozzy Make It Into Rock Hall of Fame
Dave Matthews performs on July 27, 2021, at the Ameris Bank Amphitheatre in Alpharetta, Georgia.   (Photo by Paul R. Giunta/Invision/AP)

Mary J. Blige, Cher, Foreigner, A Tribe Called Quest, Kool & the Gang, and Ozzy Osbourne have been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, a class that also includes folk-rockers Dave Matthews Band and singer-guitarist Peter Frampton. Artists must have released their first commercial recording at least 25 years before they're eligible for induction. "Rock 'n' roll is an ever-evolving amalgam of sounds that impacts culture and moves generations," says John Sykes, chair of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation. "This diverse group of inductees each broke down musical barriers and influenced countless artists that followed in their footsteps."

  • Other winners: Alexis Korner, John Mayall, and Big Mama Thornton earned the Musical Influence Award, while the late Jimmy Buffett, MC5, Dionne Warwick, and Norman Whitfield will get the Musical Excellence Award. Pioneering music executive Suzanne de Passe won the Ahmet Ertegun Award, per the AP.

  • Foreigner hype: There'd been a starry push to get Foreigner—with the hits "Urgent" and "Hot Blooded"—into the hall, with Mark Ronson, Jack Black, Slash, Dave Grohl, and Paul McCartney all publicly backing the move. Ronson's stepfather is Mick Jones, Foreigner's founding member, songwriter, and lead guitarist.
  • Notable: Osbourne, who led many parents in the 1980s to clutch their pearls with his devil imagery and sludgy music, goes in as a solo artist, having already been inducted with Black Sabbath. Four of the eight nominees—Cher, Foreigner, Frampton, and Kool & the Gang—were on the ballot for the first time. Cher—the only artist to have a No. 1 song in each of the past six decades—and Blige, with eight multiplatinum albums and nine Grammy Awards, will help boost the number of women in the hall, which critics say is too low.
  • Better luck next time: Those acts nominated this year that didn't make the cut included Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, the late Sinead O'Connor, Sade, Britpoppers Oasis, Eric B. & Rakim, and Jane's Addiction.
  • How to watch: The induction ceremony will be held Oct. 19 at the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in Cleveland. It will stream live on Disney+ with an airing on ABC at a later date and be available on Hulu the next day.
(More Rock and Roll Hall of Fame stories.)

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