Starr, Jett, Reed, Withers, Stevie Ray Among RockHall Winners

WISCONSINREPORT.COM [] (12/16/2014) – Official 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum honorees have been announced, and we have them. The following stars will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, USA on April 18, 2015.

The winners are Ringo Starr (Musical Excellence), The 5 Royals (Early Influence), The Paul Butterfield Blues Band (Performer), Green Day (Performer), Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (Performer), Lou Reed (Performer), Stevie Ray Vaughn and Double Trouble (Performer), and, Bill Withers (Performer). The six Performer Category performers to be inducted in the 2015 ceremony were selected out of 15 Nominees voted on by Rock and Roll Hall of Fame eligible voters. Fans were also encouraged to make their choices known by voting on the internet.

UPDATE: TICKETS to the 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony went on sale to the public on Thursday, December 18, 2014 beginning at 9 a.m. CST at or 800-745-3000. Tickets were expected to sell out quickly, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame indicated no more tickets were available for sale by 12 noon that same day. Individual tickets to the Induction Ceremony were available in three price ranges ($75, $150 and $300). A two-ticket limit applied to all purchases.

RINGO STARR will receive the Award for Musical Excellence at the ceremony in April 2015. Ringo has been declared one of the greatest and most creative drummers in Rock and Roll history. He joined the Beatles in 1962, and is said to have provided the musicianship and personality the group needed to become stars. His special, drumming touch, and backbeat, was key to the Beatles overall sound. After the Beatles broke up, Ringo recordings were some of the early hits from former members of the group. His turn at the drums on other solo records by former Beatles was vital to the sound fans needed to accept individual efforts by George Harrison and John Lennon’s solo recordings.

THE 5 ROYALES will be honored for being an Early Influence on Rock and Roll. They are responsible for crafting some of Rock and Roll’s first true standards. Over the course of two decades, from 1945 to 1965, the group created a remarkable body of work that laid the foundation for a host of music that followed in its wake, with pivotal recordings and performing techniques that helped define a variety of styles under the Rock and Roll umbrella. The 5 Royales combined gospel, jump blues and doo wop, marking an early and influential step in the evolution of soul music. Many of their songs were later covered by great artists who followed in their footsteps.

THE PAUL BUTTERFIELD BLUES BAND is one of the musicial groups to be inducted in 2015 in the Performer category. The racially mixed band blasted off from the Windy City with a wall-of-sound fueld by Butterfield’s inspired Harmonica and lead guitarist Mike Bloomfield’s explosive lead guitar. At that moment, American Rock and Roll collided with the real Southside Chicago Blues and there was no turning back. Along with original members, Elvin Bishop on second guitar and Mark Naftalin on organ, they grabbed the attention of musicians and fans alike.

GREEN DAY is another winner in the Performer category. Fueled by the maniacally prolific imagination of lyricise, guitarist and lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong, Green Day are the perennial punk adolescents, true to the ethos of every basement and garage-rock band that preceded them. Their rock opera masterpiece American Idiot was a damning indictment of the Bush administration, catapulting the group to another level.  “American Idiot” went all the way to Rolling Stone’s “500 Greatest Songs Of All Time;” and 2004’s “Boulevard Of Broken Dreams” took the Grammy for Record of the Year.

JOAN JETT and The Blackhearts is another outstanding band to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Perofrmer category in 2015, They created a potent mix of hard rock, glam, punk, metal and garage band tht sounds fresh and relevant in any era. Their biggest hit, “I Love Rock and Roll” is a rock classic. It was and is, as pure and simple a statement about the music’s power as Chuck Berry’s, “Roll Over Beethoven”. After Joan Jett formed the Blackhearts in 1982, with Gary Ryan on bass, Lee Crystal on drums, and Ricky Byrd on guitar, they muscled past the synthesizers of the 1980s and carried the flag for Rock and Roll.

LOU REED will make it into the RockHall as a Performer through the 2015 Induction Ceremony. With the Velvet Underground, Lou Reed created music that ranked him among the Beatles and Bob Dylan in terms of importance and influence. Every alternative movement that arose from the late 60s until his death in 2013, from punk to grunge and beyond, owed Reed an essential debt. Some might say, as time went on, and his solo career continued after Velvet Underground, his true talents became even more pronounced.

STEVIE RAY VAUGHAN and Double Trouble will gain entrance to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the Performer category at the 2015 induction ceremony. Legends run deep when memories of Stevie Ray Vaughan are invoked. The studio and live LPs released during the last seven years of his life (he died in 1990), etched Stevie Ray Vaughan into Stratocaster immortality, and influenced the next generation of blues guitarists. Vaughan laid out his dedication to the great masters for all to see, especially Guitar Slim, Buddy Guy, Freddie King and Albert King. During his short-lived career, Vaughan also recorded show-stopping collaborations with B.B. King, Jeff Beck, Paul Butterfield, Dick Dale, Lonnie Mack, Albert Collins and many others.

BILL WITHERS is the final 2015 nominee to win a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the Performer category. In a recording career that lasted only 15 years, he mastered  the vocabularies of the acoustic singer-songwriter, R&B, disco, and even mainstream jazz, while maintaining a distinctive personality as a composer and vocalist. What a legacy he created, including the bittersweet, “Ain’t No Sunshine”, which has been covered by most of the other gigantic talents in the industry, and many other memorable songs, such as, “Use Me”, “Grandma’s Hands”, and his most enduring hit, “Lean On Me.” Withers scored hits with pop, “Lovely Day”, and duets with several jazz musicians, including “Just The Two Of Us” with Grover Washington Jr. Bill Withers wrote songs that spoke to and for everyone.

ALL OF THE MUSIC STARS to be honored at the 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony can be heard regularly in the playlist online at Streaming Internet Oldies.

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