2006 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

by Lisa Donovan

The inductees to this years Rock and Roll Hall of Fame are impressive and, personally, quite exciting. The listing ranges from Miles Davis (about time, no?) to the Sex Pistols to Blondie - all worthy nominations in my opinion.

I am most happy about the seemingly overdue nod to Mr. Miles Davis. His ability to spread jazz to a rock and roll audience, and combine the the genres, has changed the face of music forever more.

“Miles Davis is one of the key figures in the history of jazz, and his place in vanguard of that pantheon is secure. His induction as a performer into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a subtler and less obvious matter. Davis never played rock or rhythm & blues, though he experimented with funk grooves on 1972’s On the Corner and in some of his later bands. However, his work intrigued a sizable segment of rock’s more ambitious fans in a way that no other serious jazz figure had ever done - and not retroactively but while he was alive and making some of his most challenging music. In particular, the boldly experimental soundscapes of Bitches Brew spoke to the sensibilities of rock fans who’d been digesting the Grateful Dead’s expansive improvisations. Davis’ was acutely attuned to his environment and he once remarked, ‘We play what the day recommends.’ ……….

“In Davis’ own words, ‘The way you change and help music is by tryin’ to invent new ways to play.’ For nearly fifty years, Miles Davis did just that. “

And then there’s the wonderfully revolutionary sounds of the late seventies/early eighties that are ingrained in my entire being - the Sex Pistols and Blondie. One of my earliest memories is hearing Debbie Harry on my parents tape deck in our silver 1980 Honda Accord. It was a moment as important as reading my first Vonnugut novel or hearing my first Velvet Underground album. These things become have become part of my generation’s personal history - they have accentuated and defined our experiences and it is always nice to know that, on a very human level, it is something most can feel utterly connected to one another in regard to. 


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This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 14th, 2006 at 10:03 am and is filed under Lifestyles, TV and Pop Culture. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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