Top row, from left: Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Sinead O'Connor and Ozzy Osbourne. Second row, from left: Peter Frampton, Cher. Bottom right: A Tribe Called Quest.

Top row, from left: Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Sinead O'Connor and Ozzy Osbourne. Second row, from left: Peter Frampton, Cher. Bottom right: A Tribe Called Quest. (Rock & Roll Hall of Fame photos)

Welcome, friends. It’s Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame time!

In case you missed it a few weeks ago, the 2024 HOF nominees were announced to the masses. With inductee announcements set for mid to late April and the nominee announcements having passed us by in February, what better time than now in March to settle into the yearly debate of who should get in, who will get in, and why Sheryl Crow’s inclusion in this thing makes it all feel absurd?

Last year, I successfully predicted four of the seven nominees who were enshrined in the Hall (Willie Nelson, Missy Elliot, George Michael and Rage Against The Machine). Meanwhile, when it came to the three I predicted would not make it in, but did, in fact, end up receiving the honor — the aforementioned Crow, Kate Bush and The Spinners — I noted that The Spinners should have made it in, Crow would eventually make it in and Bush ... well, Bush was riding high on “Stranger Things.”

Only one act that didn’t make it last year finds themselves on the ballot again this year – A Tribe Called Quest. The rest of those who came up short in 2023 — Cyndi Lauper, Soundgarden, Joy Division/New Order, Iron Maiden, Warren Zevon and The White Stripes – are officially nowhere to be found in 2024.

As for who has made the final list of people who could potentially find themselves in the hall come this autumn, I thought I’d break the 15 nominees down into three categories: Slam Dunk; Not This Year; and Come On, Man. Naturally, nobody will agree with me, but that’s half (OK, more than half) the fun. Don’t forget that the induction ceremony will go down in Cleveland later this year, and it will stream live on the most natural place something called the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame should stream: Disney+. Let’s go.

Slam Dunk

Ozzy Osborne


Peter Frampton

Sinead O’Connor

Mariah Carey

Lenny Kravitz

A Tribe Called Quest

There’s no way this prediction is going to be entirely correct. Six of the seven I have under this banner are first-time nominees (Ozzy, Frampton and Cher are all first-timers?!). Tribe, meanwhile, I argued should have been pushed through last year, but didn’t get the nod, so I’ll double down on the Queens legends in 2024 on the basis that they are still fresh in everyone’s minds. Besides: Eric B. & Rakim are the only other hip-hop act on the finalists list this year, and while they deserve to be enshrined, it wouldn’t be the first time voters passed them over.

As for the others ... I don’t know how you have something called the “Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame” and not induct Ozzy and Frampton at this point. To think that they are first-time finalists is blasphemy in its own right. One is one of the most iconic singers in heavy music to ever live while the other released what is arguably the most celebrated rock live album ever. Those two seem undeniable. And then there is Kravitz, who has been a darling of the Rock Hall contingent ever since he burst onto the scene with those dreads, that guitar and a never-ending supply of cool. If he doesn’t make it in this year, there’s no way he goes another ceremony without receiving the votes.

O’Connor, for her part, feels likely, if only for her impact on popular culture during her best years as well as the influence she provided other rebels just looking to stick up for what’s right. Plus, her tragic death might suggest that if she doesn’t make it now, those fickle deciders might lose sight of her impact as the years progress. As for Cher ... I mean, come on. It’s Cher. I’m as shocked as you are to learn that she hadn’t made it this far in the process yet. And then there’s Mariah, who is probably the least Slam Dunk here. Riding high on her second life as The Most In-Demand Christmas Singer of a generation, my gut says she makes the cut, but my gut has been very wrong before (we’re really never going to put Warren Zevon in this thing, now are we?).

Not This Year

Mary J. Blige

Eric B. & Rakim

Kool & The Gang



Kool & The Gang, Oasis and Sade are also first-time finalists here. By hook or by crook, I think they eventually earn a spot for different reasons. The Hall seems to like Kool & The Gang-ish acts, who might have flirted too much with disco for some listeners, but also provide just enough soul/funk to deem them credible. And hell: They’ve sold 70 million albums while giving American pop culture a handful of ubiquitous songs we will never, ever be able to outrun, for better or much worse.

Oasis and Sade, on the other hand, feel like they’ll get there at some point. Oasis was the biggest band in the world for a few drunken minutes, while Sade is every music critic’s darling. Or, kind of, at least. Her success in Britain alone should help push her over the hump, but to think it took until she was 65 years old to make it this far may suggest choppy waters in the future.

Then there’s Mary J. along with Eric B & Rakim. We can argue all day over the inclusion of hip-hop in this proposed sanctuary of musical legends, but if we’re going to welcome the genre through the doors, Eric B & Rakim have to be among those setting up shop once they open. As for Blige, she’s a weird one. This isn’t the first time she’s been a finalist, but it does feel like her window is closing. I was once attacked by her official fan club for panning “The London Sessions” some 10 years ago (Mary J. and Euro step was not a needed marriage then and I don’t think history proved me wrong), so I’ll tread lightly here. But in my mind, there’s as strong a possibility she misses out on the Rock Hall altogether, no matter the year.

Come On, Man

Dave Matthews Band


Jane’s Addiction

Don’t get me wrong. I find value in all three bands. In fact, if I finagled a playlist of all my favorite songs from all three acts, I’d probably have a pretty fun playlist. But I just don’t see how this happens. Foreigner, especially, has an excuse to not make it this year because it’s the band’s first time as a finalist. But DMB and Jane’s Addiction?

I don’t know, man. The former carved out a niche for themselves and made a whole hell of a lot of money in doing it. My cap is tipped to them (it should be noted, Carter Beauford is probably the most interesting pop drummer of his time, and that means something to me), but this isn’t the Hall Of Very Good. Jane’s Addiction, meanwhile, feels unnecessary. Sure, they’ve been influential in their own way, but Perry Farrell should be celebrated more for his little Lollapalooza idea and the name “Dave Navarro” doesn’t pack as much of a punch as some may have thought it would through the expansion of time. Nobody in this category feels destined to one day make it.

But then again, I said the same about Sheryl Crow. So what do I know?

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now