Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Issues New Statement Defining What Rock Music Means
The move comes ahead of the Rock Hall's next class of nominees to be announced this week. But is it the institution's answer to pushback regarding country and hip-hop artists recently being inducted in the Rock Hall?
"Rock 'n' roll has had deep roots in rhythm and blues and country music," the Rock Hall said after it nominated the country legend Dolly Parton for induction last year, as Datebook reported. Parton initially declined the nomination before accepting it.
At the time, the Rock Hall said that rock music is "not defined by any one genre" but "rather a sound that moves youth culture." It praised Parton's "brilliant talent and pioneering spirit."
Now, the revised mission statement expands on that, per UCR, adding, "Born from the collision of rhythm and blues, country and gospel, rock 'n' roll is a spirit that is inclusive and ever-changing."
It says it "celebrates the sound of youth culture and honors the artists whose music connects us all."
Rock Hall president and CEO Greg Harris revealed the change to the mission statement during a January 30 press conference. It's led to speculation that the museum's eligibility requirements for induction will become even more open to other genres in the future.
Last year, the Rock Hall's performer inductees were Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo, Duran Duran, Eminem, Eurythmics, Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie and Carly Simon. The 2021 inductees were Foo Fighters, The Go-Go's, Jay-Z, Carole King, Todd Rundgren and Tina Turner.
The 2023 Rock Hall nominees are scheduled to be announced on Wednesday (Feb. 1). The inductees will be revealed in May, along with the date and location of the next induction ceremony.