Ian MacLagan of the Small Faces and Faces put it best: “There’s going to be some rock ‘n’ roll up on that stage” at the 27th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductions, taking place April 14 in Cleveland.
MacLagan’s bands will be joined in a Rock Hall class of 2012 by Guns N’ Roses, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and the Beastie Boys, along with the late singer-songwriter Laura Nyro and the British troubadour Donovan. The late bluesman Freddie King will be inducted as an Early Influence, while writer and producer Don Kirshner will receive posthumously the Ahmet Ertegun Award for non-performers. Three producers — the late Tom Dowd, Glyn Johns and New Orleans R&B icon Cosimo Matassa — will receive The Award For Musical Excellence.
Rock Hall Class of 2012
Donovan: “Mellow Yellow”
Guns N’ Roses: “Paradise City”
Laura Nyro: “Save the Country”
Chili Peppers: “Give It Away”
The Faces: “Stay With Me”
The lineup provides plenty of intrigue for the 2012 induction ceremony. It will mark the Beastie Boys’ first major public appearance since the group’s Adam “MCA” Yauch announced that he had cancer in July of 2009.
On the Guns N’ Roses front, meanwhile, fans are anxious to see if the estranged original band members will regroup to perform or even appear together to accept their trophies. Last month guitarist Slash told Billboard.com that “with Guns ‘N Roses, there’s really no guessing exactly how it will go. I suppose if it happens, everybody will get some sort of ducks in order.” Frontman Axl Rose, the only founding member left in the GNR lineup, said on VH1’s “That Metal Show” that “I don’t know what it means in terms of me with the old band and the old lineup. If we were to be invited, I don’t know what they would ask of me. It’s up in the air.”
There likely won’t be any similar issues for the Chili Peppers, who are currently touring in Europe to support their new “I’m With You” album, or Donovan. And MacLagan tells Billboard.com that some representation from the Small Faces/Faces camp will “absolutely” perform.
“You can’t stop us,” says MacLagan, who’s played some Faces dates with guitarist Ron Wood, drummer Kenney Jones and Simply Red’s Mick Hucknall filling in for Rod Stewart. MacLagan says Stewart — who missed his own Rock Hall induction in 1994 due to an earthquake in Los Angeles two days prior — is expected to attend the April ceremony. “If he comes up on stage that would be full circle, perfect,” the keyboardist notes.
MacLagan adds that he still feels ambivalent about the Small Faces and Faces being lumped together as one entity. “But I’ll take it, if that’s how we get it,” he says. “It would’ve been nice to have separate mentions, but it may never have happened that way, so I’ll take it this way. I’m excited, especially for (late members) Ronnie (Lane) and Steve (Marriott).”
The April ceremony will be taped for broadcast by HBO, which plans to air it in early May. Like the 2009 inductions, which were also held in Cleveland, the April event will be open to the public; tickets go on sale for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum members at 10 a.m. Dec. 16, and to the general public at 10 a.m. the next day. Tickets are $50 and $100, with a two-ticket limit on all orders. More information is available at www.rockhall.com.
In addition to the induction ceremony, the Rock Hall will host more than a week of special events, including the grand opening of its library and archives, concerts — including a gospel tribute — and educational programs. Details will be announced in the near future.