The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions will take place tonight (April 7th) at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. The class of 2017 is Journey, Yes, Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), Pearl Jam, Joan Baez, Tupac Shakur, with Chic’s Nile Rodgers tapped for the Award for Musical Excellence. A truncated version of the evening’s events will air on HBO on April 29th.
Inducting the new members will be George Harrison’s son Dhani Harrison for the Electric Light Orchestra; Pat Monahan of Train for Journey; Snoop Dog for Tupac Shakur, and Pharrell who will present Chic’s Nile Rodgers with the Award for Musical Excellence. David Letterman will substitute for an ill Neil Young in inducting Pearl Jam, with Jackson Browne doing the honors for Joan Baez, and Rush’s Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson saluting Yes. Lenny Kravitz will appear in a tribute to Prince, with other performances slated for Alicia Keys, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and the Indigo Girls.
The Rock Hall has also made it clear from the word go, who in each band’s lineup will be inducted into the Hall:
JOURNEY: Jonathan Cain, Aynsley Dunbar, Steve Perry, Gregg Rolie, Neal Schon, Steve Smith, and Ross Valory.
YES: Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford, Steve Howe, Tony Kaye, Trevor Rabin, Chris Squire, Rick Wakeman, and Alan White.
ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA: Bev Bevan, Jeff Lynne, Richard Tandy, and Roy Wood.
PEARL JAM: Jeff Ament, Matt Cameron, Stone Gossard, Dave Krusen, Mike McCready, and Eddie Vedder.
We asked Journey’s co-founding keyboardist Gregg Rolie what the difference would be for the band if Steve Perry decided to perform with Journey or not: “It’s almost the same. You have to understand I’ve been gone from this band since the end of 1980, I left. And the whole dynamic changed, greatly, and so their issues that they may have, truly are their own — I can’t answer it. All I know is he’s showing up to this, which, he should, and that’s it. I haven’t heard anything else — and I’m not runnin’. I’m sittin’ in. And I’m sittin’ next to Neal and I’m gonna play with Neal and the band and Aynsley (Dunbar), and I’m gonna have fun. I don’t know what it would mean to them about Perry. I don’t know what he’s thinking about, anyway. I haven’t talked to Steve Perry in years.”