Il mucchio selvaggio è arrivato. La classe del 2014 è stata celebrata dopo le nomination dello scorso ottobre: Nirvana, Peter Gabriel, KISS, Hall and Oates, Cat Stevens e Linda Ronstadt. Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band hanno ricevuto l’Award Musical Excellence, i manager leggendari Brian Epstein (Beatles) e Andrew Loog Oldgham (Rolling Stones) l’Ahmet Ertegun Award. La cerimonia si è svolta al Barclays Center di Brooklyn. Rimasti fuori rispetto al lotto delle nomination: LL Cool J, N.W.A., Deep Purple, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, The Meters, Link Wray, Yes, The Replacements e The Zombies.
Michael Stipe ha ufficializzato l’entrata dei Nirvana con alcune parole molto toccanti: “artists in every sense of the word. Nirvana tapped into a voice that was yearning to be heard. They spoke truth, and a lot of people listened. We were a product of the community of youth looking for connection beyond the mainstream. Nirvana captured lighting in a bottle. The potency and the power of their defining moment has, for us, become indelible. That voice, Kurt, we miss you. I miss you. Nirvana defined a moment”. A ritirare il riconoscimento sono arrivati anche Dave, Krist, Courtney & Francis Bean. Poi sul palco ciò che resta dei Nirvana si è esibito con Joan Jett (‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ – GUARDA), Kim Gordon (‘Endless Nameless’/’Aneurysm’), St. Vincent (‘Lithium’ – GUARDA) e Lorde per ‘All Apologies’ – GUARDA (“so honoured and happy i got to help celebrate nirvana’s rock and roll hall of fame induction tonight. true fucking rock stars, all, forever”)
Glenn Frey (Eagles) ha omaggiato Linda Ronstadt che non era presente alla cerimonia. “It’s about time. Linda’s legacy gives us so much to celebrate and contemplate. She is one of the great voices of all time“. Il tributo in musica è arrivato da Stevie Nicks, Sheryl Crowe, Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Raitt e Carrie Underwood. Art Garfunkel è stato il cerimoniere per Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam) mentre è stato lo stesso Bruce Springsteen a premiare la sua E-Street Band: “Good evening. In the beginning, it was “Mad Dog” Vincent Lopez, standing in front of me. fresh out of jail, his head shaved at the Mermaid Room and the Upstage Club in Asbury Park…”. Poi è stata la volta dei Kiss introdotti da Tom Morello (guarda): “While the Kiss Army will accept anybody who wants to enlist, it can be a rough ride. It was not always easy being a Kiss fan arguments and fist fights were not uncommon. Kiss was never a critic’s band. Kiss was always a fan’s band. All four guys wrote great songs. All four guys were great lead singers. They practically invented the live album with ‘Kiss Alive!’”. A Questlove (The Roots) è invece toccato il compito di presentare Hall & Oates: “please join me in being a proud child of Philadelphia, a child of the ’70s, a child of the ’80s, a child of soul, a child of recognizable hairstyles, a child of mustaches, join me for one glorious night in making the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the Hall and Oates of Fame…”.
Chris Martin dei Coldplay ha presentato Peter Gabriel (già nella Hall Of Fame dal 2010 assieme ai Genesis) del quale riportiamo per intero il discorso di ringraziamento:
Chris has been working as a stand-up comic…Well, thank you so much for those kind words. It means a great deal that you’re doing this. Thank you. He’s a great songwriter. I also wanted to acknowledge a much-appreciated, many-times nominated, but not-yet inducted musician that I had up onstage with me, Leo Nocentelli from the Meters. So I saved up all my pocket money to buy my first beaten-up old tom-tom — I think it was about £7, it cost me. And to hold this thing in my hands was the key to another world, and I had no idea then that it might lead me here. I never actually made it as a drummer. I was full of enthusiasm, but not a whole lot of talent. But I snuck in here anyway. So I’m saying to all those people now at the start of that journey, that if you’re exploring making music and looking at us old-timers getting our decorations, I say two things: Dream big and let your imagination guide you, even if you end up dressing up as a flower or a sexually transmitted disease. They may think it’s a little strange. They may laugh at you, but just do it. Secondly, surround yourself with brilliance — the brilliance of who you love being around and the brilliance of their talent. I’ve worked with so many amazing people through these years, and you can see from the musicians I have on the stage with me, I’m surrounded by great — and have always been — by great musicians, including some of the world’s greatest drummers which, as an aspiring drummer, has been a real thrill. But particularly from the beginning of my solo work, a man who sadly couldn’t be here tonight but has been deputized by the legendary Pino Palladino, but Tony Levin. I wanted to mention. David Rhodes, who’s been with me in the album process for so long, too, on guitar. You’ve got the amazing Manu Katche and David Sancious here tonight…and we have a wonderful vocalist, Jennie Abrahamson, who’s been touring with me. I also have had had the great fortune to work with extraordinary engineers and producers, because they can make you sound good, and they give you a good up-the-backside when you need it, and make sure they squeeze as much juice out of you as you can get. I’ve got an extraordinary, dedicated and loyal group of people who represent me and have worked with me for many years in the management team: agents and record company folk and all the many talented folk that it takes to put a tour together. We have had for years and years and extraordinary crew who will do anything to get our show up and running, and whatever it takes. So, to all those people, I definitely wouldn’t be here without all of you working hard, and I really appreciate it. But, in the end, the core of what you are and where you are is where your heart is, and those who you love and those who love you. So I want to thank especially my dad for teaching me about the power of ideas, imagination and science; my mum, who taught me about music and compassion; my amazing kids, two of whom are here tonight — the other two are in the business of having a baby, it’s grandchildren for me — but they inspire me to make me very proud. And now I have two grandchildren, and most of all, the person who has to suffer most for the life that I’ve chosen, my incredible wife, Meabh, who’s given me an extraordinary life. I love you so much. Watch out for music. It should come with a health warning. It can be dangerous. It can make you feel so alive, so connected to the people around you, and connected to what you really are inside. And it can make you think that the world should, and could, be a much better place. And just occasionally, it can make you very, very happy. Thank you so much. It means a great deal. Thank you.