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From the Big Pink to the Waldorf Astoria: A Brief History of "The Weight"

Tuesday, November 25: 1:52 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall

The Band's "The Weight" live at the Last Waltz and Bob Dylan

The Band, more than any other group, put rock and roll back in touch with its roots. With their ageless songs and solid grasp of musical idioms, the Band reached across the decades, making connections for a generation that was, as an era of violent cultural schisms wound down, in desperate search of them. They projected a sense of community in the turbulent late 60s and early 70s – a time when the fabric of community in the United States was fraying. Guitarist Robbie Robertson drew from history in his evocative, cinematic story–songs, and the vocal triumvirate of bassist Rick Danko, drummer Levon Helm and keyboardist Richard Manuel joined in rustic harmony and traded lines in rich, conversational exchanges. Multi-instrumentalist Garth Hudson provided musical coloration in period styles that evoked everything from rural carnivals of the early 20th century to rock and roll revues of the 50s.

In an era of divisive politics, the Band produced music that crossed generational and historical borders. They did so with an ensemble brilliance borne of many years spent playing on the road.

Everything great about the Band can be found on "The Weight," the central piece of their 1968 debut, Music From Big ...


continue Categories: Inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, History of the Blues, Bob Dylan, Rock's Greatest Guitar Players, Inductee, Hall of Fame, Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Announces 2013 Inductees

Tuesday, December 11: 10:41 a.m.
Posted by Rock Hall

At a press conference today at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ bassist and 2012 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Flea announced the list of performer inductees and Ahmet Ertegun Award recipients for induction. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees for 2013 are:

Performer Category:
·    Heart
·    Albert King
·    Randy Newman
·    Public Enemy
·    Rush
·    Donna Summer

Ahmet Ertegun (non performer) Award:
·    Lou Adler
·    Quincy Jones

Scheduled for Thursday, April 18, 2013, the 28th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held at the Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles. This marks the first time since 1993 that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held on the West Coast. The ceremony will again be open to the public, as it was in 2009 and 2012 in Cleveland.

Joel Peresman, President and CEO of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, said, “We are thrilled to announce this year’s class of inductees, which again represents the broad, compelling and significant definition of rock and roll.”

The induction ceremony will broadcast on HBO on Saturday, May 18 at 9pm ET/PT. Said Michael ...


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McCartney's Letter to Lennon

Wednesday, November 23: 3 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
Paul McCartney inducts John Lennon

In 1994, John Lennon was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist. His longtime friend and musical collaborator Paul McCartney, making his first Hall of Fame appearance, inducted Lennon. More personal than the traditional induction speech, McCartney read a "letter" to Lennon, recounting a number of moving memories and thanking Lennon.

McCartney shared stories from their earliest attempts at writing songs together, teaching Lennon guitar chords and visiting Lennon's "Mum's house." He talked of their hotel visits with Little Richard and Gene Vincent, and spending time with Elvis Presley. He recalled Lennon's advice for handling the vocals on the Beatles' "Kansas City" and the "sneaky little look" they shared during the writing of "A Day In The Life." McCartney discussed meeting "this girl called Yoko Ono" – who later accepted Lennon's Hall of Fame Award on behalf of her late husband. The heartfelt letter moved many to tears.

"The joys you told me about how you were baking bread now and how you were playing with your little baby Sean," said McCartney of reconnecting with Lennon later in life. "That was great for me, because it gave me something to hold ...


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Inductee, Event

Today in Rock: Duane Allman is Born

Saturday, November 19: 10 a.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
Duane Allman / photo by Ed Berman

On November 20, 1946, legendary guitarist Duane Allman was born in Nashville, Tennessee. His unparalleled guitar work, songwriting and inspiring presence helped earn his namesake band a deserved place in the pantheon of rock and roll, and made him an icon.

As the principal architects of Southern rock, the Allman Brothers Band forged this new musical offshoot from elements of blues, jazz, soul, R&B and rock and roll. Along with the Grateful Dead and Cream, they help advance rock as a medium for improvisation. Their kind of jamming required a level of technical virtuosity and musical literacy that was relatively new to rock & roll, which had theretofore largely been a song-oriented medium. Duane Allman and Dickey Betts – The original guitarists in the Allman Brothers Band – broke that barrier with soaring, extended solos. Combined with organist Gregg Allman’s gruff, soulful vocals and Hammond B3 organ, plus the forceful, syncopated drive of a rhythm section that included two drummers, the Allman Brothers Band were a blues-rocking powerhouse from their beginnings in 1969. Moreover, their success paved the way for other bands from the South, including Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Marshall Tucker Band, and the Charlie Daniels Band. 

The group formed around ...


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