The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum

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Hall & Oates induct the Temptations

"Oates:  How you doing tonight?

Hall: Everbody all right?

Oates: How many people out there are Temptations freaks? 

Hall: Positively.

Oates: Well, you know that we are, right?

Hall: You know we are.

Oates: Now, in the mid-'60s, when Daryl and I got together, there were a million vocal groups.  Now in those days, you had to have uniforms, right?  Well the Temptations always had the best uniforms.

Hall: They wore the best dresses, man.

Oates: And of course, you had to have steps.  And the Temptations had the best steps.  Now, you know you had to sing - and you know that the Temptations could sing. Now we had Eddy Kendrick with his falsetto, I think that's kind of set the standard for what's happening.  You had David Ruffin, with the voice that sends chills up your arms, you know what I mean?  You had Otis, who put the whole thing together.  And you had Melvin Franklin who is quite possibly the best bass singer of all time. And to us it was everything.  We tried our best, and we still haven't even gotten close, but... But there's one more guy that we forgot to mention.

Hall: Yeah, well, you know the whole thing is, seeing those guys in the '60s was amazing, but you've got to remember that they never stopped, you know - they're still gigging on, you know.  And through all the trials and tribulations, through all the personal changes, and through all the personal problems and everything, you know they're still - what am I saying?  They're still out there, you know?  They're still working.

Oates: But that's what it's all about.

Hall: That is what it's all about, you know - that's what this is all about tonight.  This isn't just about the past.  This is about the past blending into the present and transcending all that stuff, you know?  This isn't about old people - this is about people who are gigging right now.  In fact, most of the people that are inducted tonight are still gigging right now, you know what I mean?  There's a few people that aren't, but most people are. But there's one person I'd like to talk about that can't be here tonight.  Everybody's made it tonight - everybody that could make it; there's one person that couldn't make it, and I think in some ways he was the soul of the Temptations, 'cause he was the guy who was the original lead singer - you know, he kind of came up with all the steps and everything, and I got to know him a little bit in the '60s when I was, like, 17 years old or whatever.  His name was Paul Williams, the late Paul Williams.  I wish he could be here tonight, I really do. I know he's here somewhere. He used to sing this one song - they used to end the show with one song in the old days, in the '60s, and he used to sing the song "Don't Look Back."  And uh... you want me to sing it? 


Oates:  It's our great pleasure to introduce the Temptations."