Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Cheap Trick: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Justifications and Excuses, Part XV

Today, in the final entry in this series, we deal with the case of Cheap Trick. I am sure I don't need to tell you guys about Cheap Trick - the magnetism of Robin Zander, the charisma of Rick Nielsen, and how about the tunes? "I want you to want me!" "The dream police, da da da da da da da!" "Your mama's all right, your daddy's all right, they just seem a little bit weird..."

Cheap Trick was the only one of these artists whose poster I had on my wall when I was a teenager, so I approach them with a little bit of bias. Cheap Trick basically invented power pop, which has probably been my favorite genre of music over the years. Without Cheap Trick, you don't get Weezer, do you? Do you get Husker Du or Fountains of Wayne without Cheap Trick? Do you get the Shoes? Well, we could probably live without the Shoes.

Everybody loves Cheap Trick. John Lennon asked Rick Nielsen and Bun E. Carlos to work on Double Fantasy (although it was never used, and when they showed up at the studio, Yoko had no idea who they were). Musicians from Joey Ramone to Kurt Cobain professed their admiration for the boys from Rockford. And Apu as well:




I should probably look and see how they did on the charts, but really, I don't care. I'm entitled to one vote out of pure fandom. I love Cheap Trick, and I'm voting YES for them.


This concludes my series on my Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ballot. The most enjoyable part of this for me has been listening to the music of all these great artists while I was making my case for them. As they say in the Miss America pageant, they're all winners, and I wouldn't mind seeing nearly all of them in the Hall of Fame, although I still have trouble understanding the argument for Deep Purple. Thanks for reading. 

7 comments:

  1. "Cheap Trick basically invented power pop"
    Big Star, Todd Rundgren, the Raspberries and the Beatles all say hello, while "Surfin' USA" and the collected hits of Chuck Berry play in the background.

    If Aerosmith can be in the HoF, so too should Cheap Trick be:
    Both were really two- or three-year wonders as far as their truly essential records, and both had some sorta cringeworthy big hits later on down the line.

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  2. I think the "had a Cheap Trick poster on the wall" contingent of RRHOF voters might be bigger than expected--it will not surprise me if they get the nod.

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  3. So now that you're done Tom, any thoughts on the most deserving HoFers who weren't on the ballot?

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    1. Yes yes, I concur with that question. Who's left out that should be in?

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  4. That's a good question. Of thw 15 nominees, the only ones that I really thought should be inducted prior to my getting the vote were Cheap Trick and Janet Jackson. The ones I'd most strongly support who weren't on the ballot would be Tommy James & the Shondells, Badfinger, the Go-Go's and Pavement.

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    1. BTW, we should have asked you for your predeictions. What are they?

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  5. Tom, life without bands like The Raspberries, Big Star, Cheap Trick, Apples in Stereo and other similar acts would be too scary. I'm not sure how Husker Du fits in here though; maybe I just need to listen to some more.

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