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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
Ben Beaumont-Thomas

Cher, Ozzy Osbourne and A Tribe Called Quest among 2024 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees

Cher in October 2023 – the singer has finally been acknowledged in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Cher in October 2023. The singer has finally been acknowledged in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Photograph: Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

Cher, Ozzy Osbourne, Mary J Blige and A Tribe Called Quest are among the stars to be added to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year – many of them rather overdue.

Artists can be added to the US institution 25 years after their first recording, but Cher – who once described her snub by the Hall as “kind of rude” – has had to wait until 60 years after her first releases with Sonny & Cher to be included.

Peter Frampton is another artist who has had a long wait. After debuting in 1972, and scoring one of the best-selling albums of the 1970s in the US with Frampton Comes Alive!, the 74-year-old British artist has eventually been added this year.

Osbourne had already been inducted as a member of Black Sabbath, but now has a second entry acknowledging a solo career that began with 1980 album Blizzard of Ozz. A Tribe Called Quest, one of the foundational groups in hip-hop, are acknowledged 34 years on from their debut album, while Blige, who has topped the US album chart four times, is included after 32 years.

Other inductees include Dave Matthews Band, who have enjoyed a multiplatinum-selling career that began in 1994, racking up seven No 1 albums in a row between 1998 and 2018.

I Want to Know What Love Is hitmakers Foreigner have also been added, acknowledging a career that has resulted in almost 40m album sales in the US. Rounding out the 2024 inductees are the funk, disco and pop band Kool & the Gang. Best known for hits such as Get Down on It and the US No 1 Celebration, they began back in 1969 but continue to tour and released their latest album in 2023.

The Hall’s musical excellence award is this year given to Jimmy Buffett, who died in September 2023; MC5, whose guitarist and bandleader Wayne Kramer died in February; and soul icons Dionne Warwick and Norman Whitfield. The musical influence award is given to three blues artists: American singer Big Mama Thornton, plus British performers Alexis Korner and John Mayall.

The Ahmet Ertegun award is given to Suzanne de Passe, a media mogul who rose through the ranks at Motown Records to become president of its film and TV arm, before spinning it off into a successful production company under her own name.

The year’s diverse range – by Rock Hall standards – of inductees comes as the Hall attempts to broaden its canon of artists. Last year, it was calculated that fewer than 10% of inductees have been women since the awards began in 1986.

“The Rock Hall’s canon-making doesn’t just reek of sexist gatekeeping, but also purposeful ignorance and hostility,” Courtney Love wrote in a 2023 Guardian op-ed. “If so few women are being inducted into the Rock Hall, then the nominating committee is broken. If so few Black artists, so few women of colour, are being inducted, then the voting process needs to be overhauled.”

In 2010, Cher described the snub of Sonny & Cher as “kind of rude … We influenced a generation, and it’s like: what more do you want?” After scoring era-defining hits such as I Got You Babe, Cher went on to a solo career that flourished through a series of reinventions, including her embrace of Europop in 1998 with global hit Believe. Aged 77, she continues to release new music, with a Christmas album coming out in 2023.

Meanwhile, the Hall of Fame’s accompanying museum in Cleveland is planning a $135m expansion. Announced in 2023 and with an estimated completion date of early 2026, it will increase the museum’s size by a third.

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