The 2021 inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame were announced on On May 12, 2021, with the late Afrobeat legend, Fela Kuti, missing out on the list.
The development comes despite the fact that Fela Kuti placed second in the fan vote category which creates a single official ballot.
The inductees chosen are Jay Z, Foo Fighters, Carole King, Todd Rundgren, The Go-Go’s and Tina Turner. This marks heartbreak for Nigerians and Africans, whose massive voting got Fela into second behind Tina Turner on the fans ballot.
Others inductees in the special categories include Clarence Ahmet (Ahmet Ertegum Awardee), Karftwerk, Charley Patton, Gil Scot-Herron (Early Influence), LL Cool J, Billy Preston, and Randy Rhoads (Musical Excellence).
On February 10, 2021, it was announced that the Nigerian legend would compete alongside 15 other music legends including;
Mary J. Blige
LL Cool J
New York Dolls
Rage Against The Machine
— Rock Hall (@rockhall) May 12, 2021
The induction ceremony is billed for October 30 in Cleveland, Ohio.
In a statement on its website, the organisers explained that “the top five artists, as selected by the public, will comprise a ‘fans’ ballot’ that will be tallied along with the other ballots to select the 2021 Inductees.”
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“Nominee ballots are sent to an international voting body of more than 1,000 artists, historians, and members of the music industry. Factors such as an artist’s musical influence on other artists, length and depth of career and the body of work, innovation and superiority in style and technique are taken into consideration,” it added.
This means that making the top five in the fan vote category does not automatically qualify a nominee for induction.
For instance, Fela, Turner, The Go-Go’s, Foo Fighters and Iron Maiden made the top five of the fan vote category.
But only the three of them — Turner, The Go-Go’s and Foo Fighters — made the inductees’ list alongside some of those — like Jay-Z — who missed out on the top five in the fan vote category.
The development has continued to generate controversies on Twitter, with many Nigerians expressing different views on the selection process.