April 5, 2017

The Top 10 Rock Hall Induction Ceremony Quotes

You need the right speakers. With the 32nd annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony happening this Friday at Brooklyn's Barclays Center—and with the surprise development of David Letterman now inducting Pearl Jam, subbing for a sick Neil Young—it's time to recall standout induction speaker/inductee comments from ceremonies past. 

Heartfelt, cutting, and often hilarious—and in the spirit of the old Letterman show—here are the Top 10 quotes in Rock Hall induction history:

Hurry it up: Paul McCartney and  Ringo Starr
10.  "After the things I've sat through tonight!" - A clearly exasperated Ringo Starr, reacting to Paul McCartney pointing at his watch to move Starr's speech along. It was over five hours into the ceremony. (2015)

9. "Blah, blah, blah..." (with varying inflection, for three comically sustained, performance art-like minutes) - Alex Lifeson at Rush's induction (2013)

8.  "He's taught us a lot as a band, about dignity and commitment, and playing in the moment. And when I hear the speeches, inducting Janis Joplin and Frank Zappa... I'm just really glad he's still here." - Eddie Vedder, inducting Neil Young (1995)

7. "We have a love/hate relationship—he loves me and I hate him." - Jeff Beck, inducting Rod Stewart (1994)

6. “They say that I have no hits, and that I'm difficult to work with. And they say that like it's a bad thing.” - Tom Waits (2011)

Jay-Z inducting Grandmaster Flash
5.  "What Chuck Berry did for the electric guitar, Flash did for the turntable." - Jay-Z, inducting Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five (2007)

4.  "Tonight we're all on our best behavior... and we're being rewarded for 25 years of bad behavior." - Mick Jagger at the Rolling Stones' induction (1989)

3.  "Now, the question is, are we rock and roll? And I say you goddamn right we rock and roll. Rock and roll is not an instrument, rock and roll is not even a style of music. Rock and roll is a spirit... Rock and roll is not conforming to the people who came before you, but creating your own path in music and in life. That is rock and roll, and that is us." - Ice Cube at N.W.A.'s induction (2016)

Mike Love at the podium in 1988
2.  "We did about 180 performances last year...I'd like to see the Mop Tops match that! I'd like to see Mick Jagger get out on this stage and do 'I Get Around' versus 'Jumpin' Jack Flash,' any day now... And I'd like to see some people kick out the jams, and I challenge the Boss to get up on stage and jam... I wanna see Billy Joel, see if he can still tickle ivories. I know Mick Jagger won't be here tonight, he's gonna have to stay in England. But I'd like to see us in the Coliseum and he at Wembley Stadium because he's always been chickenshit to get on stage with the Beach Boys." - Mike Love at the Beach Boys' induction (1988)

1. "I wanna thank Mike Love for not mentioning me..." - Bob Dylan (1988)