Rob Halford of British heavy metal legends JUDAS PRIEST has shared the letter his band received from the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame informing them that they failed to make the 2018 class of Rock Hall inductees.
BON JOVI, DIRE STRAITS, THE MOODY BLUES, THE CARS and Nina Simone will all be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame next year. Sister Rosetta Tharpe will be given an Early Influence award.
Despite having been eligible for induction since 1999, JUDAS PRIEST was only nominated for the first time this year.
During a December 13 interview with Mark and Neanderpaul of the 100.7 KSLX radio station in Phoenix, Arizona, Halford revealed that he learned about PRIEST being passed over for Rock Hall in a text from the band's management. He then read the e-mail he received from the Rock Hall formally letting him know that his band would not be inducted in 2018.
The full text of the e-mail is as follows:
"Thank you for embracing your nomination for induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. While you didn't garner enough votes for induction this year, you were part of a very select group of Hall Of Fame nominees.
"Artists are frequently on the ballot multiple times before they are inducted. For example, BLACK SABBATH were nominated eight times before their induction, Patti Smith seven times, Solomon Burke nine times, and both the BEASTIE BOYS and THE YARDBIRDS were on the ballot three times before their respective inductions.
"If you are touring or simply traveling nearby, please visit our museum in Cleveland, Ohio. Our six floors of exhibitions tell the remarkable history of rock and roll and how it changed the world. You're part of that story and we'd love to share it with you.
"Again, congratulations on your nomination.
"My best, Greg Harris, president and CEO of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame."
Asked if he would like to see PRIEST inducted into the Rock Hall, Rob responded: "Personally, I would love it, yeah. I've said it before, I think we deserve it. We've put our 10,000 hours in and more. And beyond that, we just feel that heavy metal music deserves more space on the shelf at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame."
Adding that he and his bandmates "were thrilled and honored to be even nominated," Halford admitted that it's "kind of bittersweet" to find out that they wouldn't be inducted next year. "We got the nomination, which is something of a recognition for the work that you've done, but we didn't quite get in this time. But I'm hopeful that eventually we'll get some more metal [in there]."
The 33rd annual Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction ceremony will be held at Cleveland's Public Hall on April 14, 2018. An edited version will air later on HBO and there will be a radio broadcast on SiriusXM. Ticket details will be announced in the near future.
Ballots were sent to a voting group of more than 1,000 artists, historians and music-industry professionals.
The public was invited to participate again this year in the fan vote, which drummed up record numbers with more than 6.8 million votes cast. (Of those, 1.1 million were for BON JOVI.) The top five artists made up a fan's ballot, which counted as a single vote.
Rock Hall rules state that artists become eligible 25 years after their first records were released, but the Hall also claims that other "criteria include the influence and significance of the artists' contributions to the development and perpetuation of rock 'n' roll," which is, of course, open to interpretation.
Despite being eligible for induction since 1999 — 25 years after the release of its first disc — KISS didn't get its first nomination until 2009, and was finally inducted in 2014.
DEEP PURPLE was eligible for the Rock Hall since 1993 but didn't get inducted until last year.