Nile Rodgers is being honored at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ... without Chic. How has the Hall divided band's allegiances in years past?

By Alex Heigl
December 20, 2016 04:15 PM
Credit: Josh Brasted/Filmmagic

Nile Rodgers is being honored at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year, despite the fact that the groundbreaking funk and disco act he fronted, Chic, will not be joining him. It’s a bit odd for one person to be inducted without their musical brethren, but the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has a habit of actually doing the opposite of what happened to poor Chic — inducting bands and ignoring the things that their respective members have gone on to do.

Iggy Pop

Considering that most people know Iggy either through off-time boogie of “The Passenger” or the rock’em-sock’em “Lust for Life” — both of which fall into his solo period — it’s a bit odd that the Hall of Fame elected to put his first band, the primally bludgeoning Stooges, in their hallowed halls before Pop. Unless, that is, they’re making their case solely on the strength of the guitars in “Seek and Destroy,” in which case, okay, fine, that makes sense.

Ozzy, Dio and Black Sabbath

Ronnie James Dio’s titanic influence on the legacy of heavy music — he was in Rainbow, he wrote “Holy Diver,” he’s responsible (well, him and Jinx Dawson, anyway) for popularizing the “devil horns” gesture — was duly ignored by the Hall of Fame when they decided to exclude him from Black Sabbath’s induction in 2006. Ozzy protested the entire thing, which may be why the Hall of Fame is acting like “Crazy Train” and “Bark at the Moon” don’t exist and refusing to induct Ozzy for his solo work.

Dave Mustaine and Metallica

Dave Mustaine was kicked out of Metallica a month before the group recorded their first proper full-length album, Kill ‘Em All, and he holds writing credits on four songs — “The Four Horsemen,” “Jump in the Fire,” “Phantom Lord” and “Metal Milita” — on the record, which would become the group’s breakthrough. Mustaine would respond by forming Megadeth and holding a grudge through most of the ’80s and ’90s, which was no doubt rankled slightly by being left out of the group’s 2009 induction into the Hall.

Roy Wood and ELO

Okay, if ELO and Yes are on the docket, but King Crimson and Emerson & Lake and Palmer are going to be skipped, then the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has to at least nod at Wizzard as a consolation prize. One of the founding members of ELO, Roy Wood was a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter who also played bass for Bo Diddley at one point, though he’s probably best known for Wizzard’s 1973 glam-tacular “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday,” a 1973 novelty hit whose laughability belies A) the depth of Wood’s talents as a musician, arranger and songwriter and B) the six top-10 U.K. hits Wizzard notched between 1972 and ’74.

Steve Winwood and Traffic

Traffic was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2004, and the group’s brand of heady, high-talent improvisation (and the time period in which they were lucky enough to be active) dovetails with the Hall of Fame’s preference for hippie-era white guys with guitars. But there’s absolutely no reason in the world why Phil Collins should be in the Hall of Fame both for his solo work and time with Genesis while Steve Winwood — the man who wrote “Higher Love” and nine other U.S. top-10 hits — should have to continue to languish in whatever form of anonymity can be granted to multimillionaire rock stars. Fie, I say.