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Cher, Lenny Kravitz and Ozzy Osbourne among Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nominees

Cher, Lenny Kravitz and Ozzy Osbourne
Ben Houdijk/lev radin/Tinseltown
Cher, Lenny Kravitz and Ozzy Osbourne are among the 15 Rock Hall nominees this year.

Cher might be onto something. Last year, during an appearance on “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” she slammed the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for not inducting her.

“I wouldn’t be in it now if they gave me a million dollars,” said the diva with hit singles since the 1960s.

In the past, Black Sabbath, Todd Rundgren and the Sex Pistols all protested their Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nominations – and were inducted anyway.

Cher is on the ballot for the first time this year, alongside several other debut acts: Mariah Carey, Peter Frampton, Kool & the Gang, Lenny Kravitz, Oasis and Sade. Artists are eligible 25 years after the release of their first record.

Ozzy Osbourne was previously inducted as lead singer of Black Sabbath. He debuts on the ballot three years after the influential guitarist for his solo work, the late Randy Rhoads, was inducted in the Musical Excellence category.

Arena-rockers Foreigner, currently on a farewell tour, are also under consideration this year. Sinéad O’Connor, who passed away last summer, makes the cut amid a reappraisal of her life and work.

Several hip-hop pioneers return to the ballot this year: Eric B. & Rakim from the 1980s and Mary J. Blige and A Tribe Called Quest from the ‘90s.

Jane's Addiction, one of the first groups labeled “alternative” in the late 1980s, proved massively influential in the ‘90s. Dave Matthews Band rounds out this year’s class.

Northeast Ohio-bred Devo was nominated in prior years but is absent from the list.

Music industry professionals will vote on this year’s class alongside the online fan vote, which has helped induct acts such as George Michael and Yes in the past. The final list comes out in April. Inductees for the non-performer and sidemen categories will be released before the ceremony this fall at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

Changing venues

From its inception in 1986, the induction ceremony was held at New York City’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel every January through 1998, with two exceptions.

In 1993, the ceremony moved to the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. After much lobbying by Northeast Ohio leaders, the induction was held at the Renaissance Hotel in Cleveland in May 1997.

The ceremony eventually moved to mid-March at the Waldorf until 2008.

After that, from 2009 until the COVID-19 pandemic, ceremonies generally took place in April, with one year at Cleveland’s Public Hall followed by two years in New York City. The Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles hosted the 2013 event. In 2020, the inductees were honored virtually.

The 2021 induction was held in Cleveland at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, followed by Los Angeles and then New York City.

Kabir Bhatia is a senior reporter for Ideastream Public Media's arts & culture team.