Classic Rock Corner

The 10 Biggest Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Snubs

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Years Eligible: 25
The Monkees were brought together by producers for a television show about a fictional band inspired by The Beatles, which aired from 1966 to 1968; at the height of their popularity in 1967, The Monkees' albums actually outsold those of The Beatles and the Rolling Stones. In the beginning, the band, which consisted of Americans Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork as well as Englishman Davy Jones, was allowed only a limited amount of input into its music; they eventually convinced their producers to give them the freedom to create and control their own music, and, after the show was canceled, carried on until 1971. The band's hits include "Last Train to Clarksville," "Pleasant Valley Sunday," "Daydream Believer" and "I'm a Believer," a song composed by Neil Diamond. The band found new popularity when the show was brought back to TV in the '80s and the band reunited for a tour; singer Davy Jones died in 2012.
Years Eligible: 20
Irish rock band Thin Lizzy formed in Dublin in 1969 and was led by bass guitarist and vocalist Phil Lynott, who wrote or co-wrote almost all of the band’s songs. Their hits include a version of traditional Irish ballad ”Whiskey in the Jar," "Jailbreak" and their most famous song, "The Boys Are Back in Town." Thin Lizzy’s music is often described as hard rock or even heavy metal, though it is actually more eclectic and includes elements of blues, soul, Irish folk music and psychedelic rock. The band is known for the twin-guitar attack that featured Gary Moore and John Sykes, among other acclaimed guitarists, throughout their history. Lynott’s lyrics were about real-life working-class people and their struggles, closer to Van Morrison than Van Halen; he died in 1986 at age 36 from multiple organ failure brought about by his drug dependency. Sykes re-formed Thin Lizzy as a tribute to Lynott in 1996, and the band has continued on with various lineups.
2. YES
Years Eligible: 22
English progressive-rock band Yes was formed in 1969 by bassist Chris Squire and singer Jon Anderson; the band is known for its lengthy songs that feature mystical, cosmic lyrics and complex arrangements and odd time signatures. The group has released 21 studio albums, which most of their fans like to listen to from beginning to end to get the full Yes experience; they did have a couple of hit singles, including a shortened version of “Roundabout,” the opening song from their 1971 album Fragile. In 1983, "Owner of a Lonely Heart," from their album 90125, reached No. 1 on the U.S. charts; its video was also a hit on MTV. Squire died from cancer in 2015, and the band carries on although currently no founding members are left. Loyal Yes fans have been very critical of the Rock Hall throughout the years for not inducting the band, much like fans of fellow prog-rockers Rush; the Canadian trio finally got inducted in 2013 after a 14-year wait.
Years Eligible: 27
Formed in England in 1964, The Moody Blues were pioneers of progressive rock and art-rock, especially with the release of 1967 sophomore album Days of Future Passed. Two singles from the album, "Nights in White Satin" and "Tuesday Afternoon," were instant classics and remain popular on classic-rock radio to this day. The band has released 16 studio albums and has sold more than 70 million copies of them worldwide; the band found renewed success in 1986 with the release of its album The Other Side of Life, which featured a hit single and MTV video with the track "Your Wildest Dreams." Founding member Ray Thomas retired in 2002, leaving drummer Graeme Edge as the only original member left in the band; longtime members guitarist Justin Hayward and bass player John Lodge remain, and Moody Blues continue to tour extensively.

Other Notable Snubs: Dick Dale, Peter, Paul & Mary, The Zombies, Captain Beefheart, Jim Croce, Harry Nilsson, The Carpenters, King Crimson, Three Dog Night, Warren Zevon, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Electric Light Orchestra, New York Dolls, Bad Company, etc.

The 31st Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony premieres Saturday, April 30 on HBO.
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David Rozycki
Contact: David Rozycki