Female Performers Dominate 2021 Rock Hall Inductions

Tina Turner is among the record-breaking number of women in the 2021 class of inductees
Tina Turner is among the record-breaking number of women in the 2021 class of inductees [Everett Collection]

A record-breaking infusion of female power and a hip-hop legend are among the performers entering the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony is set to take place in Cleveland at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse on October 30 and broadcast on HBO. 

FOO FIGHTERS

Warren, Ohio's Dave Grohl  [Antonio Scorza / Shutterstock.com]

The death of Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain in 1994, left drummer Dave Grohl looking to reinvent his musical career. The Warren, Ohio, native did that in the form of Foo Fighters, an alt-rock band that filled stadiums and consistently scored in the pop charts. The group enters the Hall of Fame in its first year of eligibility.

THE GO-GO's

The Go-Gos [ANL REX / Shutterstock.com]

Born out of an L.A. punk band called The Misfits, this all-female quintet developed a pop, new wave style. They were unique among so-called “girl groups” in that the sang their own songs, played their own instruments and weren’t controlled by male producers. This is the first time they’ve been nominated for Rock Hall honors. They’ve been eligible for induction since 2006.

JAY-Z

Jay-Z [Debby Wong / Shutterstock.com]

Shawn Carter came out of the Brooklyn projects with the nickname “Jazzy.” He shortened it to Jay-Z and went on to dominate the world of hip-hop as a singer, songwriter, record producer and businessman. He walks into the Rock Hall in his first year of eligibility.

CAROLE KING

Carole King [DFree / Shutterstock.com]

The Hall of Fame first honored Carole King in 1990 for the many famous pop tunes of the 1960s that she wrote with her former husband Gerry Goffin. But her legendary status continued to grow as a solo performer. King's 1971 album, "Tapestry," was the top-selling album for 15 weeks and stayed on the charts for over six years. Her music has been recorded by artists ranging from the Beatles and Aretha Franklin to Lady Gaga.

TODD RUNDGREN

Todd Rundgren [Tinseltown / Shutterstock.com]

Rundgren’s Cleveland induction into the Hall of Fame is fitting, due to a loyal base of fans here who have followed his career as a singer, songwriter, producer and avant garde performer, dating back to the late 1960s. Over the course of five decades, his music has ranged from romantic pop to hard rock. He’s also been a pioneer in meshing electronic technology and video in performance.

TINA TURNER

Tina Turner [Vicki L. Miller / Shutterstock.com]

Like Carole King, this is Turner’s second Hall of Fame honor. She first made her mark as lead singer of the Ike and Tina Turner Revue in the late 1950s. She divorced Ike Turner in the mid-70s and went on to stage a powerful comeback almost 10 years later as a solo performer. Her dramatic life story has been the subject of two memoirs, a feature film and a documentary.

Ahmet Ertegun Award

CLARENCE AVANT - Over the course of his 90 years, Avant distinguished himself as a label owner, manager and music industry consultant. He helped guide the careers of performers such as Little Willie John, Jimmy Smith and Bill Withers. He's also been a mentor to artists who work behind the scenes, such as producers Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis, L.A. Reid and Babyface.

Early Influence Award

KRAFTWERK - German electronic music pioneers whose use of synthesizers and stage presence influenced many artists, ranging from David Bowie and Brian Eno to Afrika Bambaataa and DEVO.

CHARLEY PATTON - 1920s blues artist whose singing, guitar-playing and performance style proved to be inspirational to many generations of musicians from Robert Johnson and Howlin' Wolf to Jimi Hendrix and and Keb' Mo'.

GIL SCOTT-HERON - He fused poetry and jazz to deliver cultural criticism and promote political activism. His performances, such as "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" and "Winter in America," were a precursor to rap.

Musical Excellence Award

In addition, session musician Billy Preston, hip-hop pioneer L.L. Cool J and guitar-player Randy Rhoads were honored for musical excellence.

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