The Cars, The Moody Blues, Nina Simone & More Join Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame

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The 2018 Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame induction ceremony was held at Cleveland’s Public Auditorium on Saturday night. The Cars, The Moody Blues, Nina Simone, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Dire Straits and Bon Jovi were honored with speeches and performances as each act now takes its place in the Rock Hall. The night also included musical tributes to both Tom Petty and Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell who both passed away last year.

The night began with a previously unannounced appearance by The Killers who performed “American Girl” as a tribute to Tom Petty. The evening’s lengthy ceremonies officially got underway as Howard Stern emerged to induct the night’s ostensive headliner Bon Jovi. According to Rolling Stone, The King of All Media’s speech featured jabs at the magazine’s founder Jann Wenner, jokes about Jon Bon Jovi being responsible for destroying the ozone layer in the 1980s, stories about Richie Sambora’s prowess as a ladies man and more. Bon Jovi later took to the stage reuniting their original lineup for the first time since 2001 – the band’s original bassist Alec John Such left in 1994 and guitarist Richie Sambora abruptly parted ways with them in 2013. The New Jersey-based band delivered a string of their 1980s classics alongside a pair of newer tunes.

Dire Straits were the next band to be honored. The British rock band’s lead singer and guitarist Mark Knopfler and rhythm guitarist David Knopfler were both no-shows at the ceremony. In the months leading up to their induction, Mark refused to acknowledge the honor at all, while his brother decided to skip it because of a claim that Rock Hall reneged on its promise to pay his full travel bills. As a result, a short montage video was shown in place of an induction speaker with the members of the band that did decide to attend giving speeches.

Alabama Shakes’ frontwoman Brittany Howard then had the honor of inducting Sister Rosetta Tharpe, who was chosen for the Early Influence category. Howard narrated a short video about the influential Tharpe, who has been called “the Godmother of Rock & Roll.” Howard with the help of Questlove on drums and Paul Shaffer on piano performed Tharpe’s 1938 classic “That’s All.” Guitarist Felicia Collins, who is best known for playing alongside Shaffer during his tenure as the leader of the CBS Orchestra on the Late Show with David Letterman, then emerged to sing “Strange Things Are Happening Every Day.”

The Killers frontman Brandon Flowers returned to the stage to induct The Cars. The Boston-based New Wave act recruited Weezer bassist Scott Shriner to fill in for their original bass player Benjamin Orr who died of pancreatic cancer in 2000 for their performance. The band, who last toured in 2011, delivered takes on “My Best Friend’s Girl,” “You Might Think,” “Moving In Stereo” and “Just What I Needed.”

Following a montage of all the musicians that we lost in 2017, Heart’s Ann Wilson with Alice In Chains’ guitarist Jerry Cantrell honored Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell with a stripped-down version of “Black Hole Sun.” Mary J. Blige was tapped to induct Nina Simone. The Roots and singer Andra Day performed “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free” and “I Put A Spell on You” as a tribute to Simone. Lauryn Hill replaced Day on stage leading the ad-hoc ensemble through Simone’s “Ne Me Quitte Pas,” “Black Is the Color of My True Love’s Hair” and “Feeling Good.”

The Moody Blues were the final band of the night to have their name called as Ann Wilson had the pleasure of inducting the prog-rock band. The English act performed “I’m Just a Singer (In a Rock and Roll Band)” from their 1972 album Seventh Sojourn, “Nights In White Satin” from 1967’s Days Of Future Past, with “Ride My See-Saw” from 1968’s In Search of the Lost Chord bringing the night to a close.

Watch fan-shot video captured by MarchofTheRashbaum of almost the entire night below:

[The Killers Tom Petty Tribute | Captured by MarchofTheRashbaum]

[Howard Stern Inducts Bon Jovi]

[Bon Jovi – “Livin’ On A Prayer”]

[Bon Jovi – “It’s My Life”]

[Bon Jovi – “When We Were Us”]

[Bon Jovi – “You Give Love A Bad Name”]

[Dire Straits Complete Induction Speech]

[Brittany Howard, Questlove & Paul Shaffer – Sister Rosetta Tharpe Tribute]

[The Cars Induction Speech]

[The Cars – “You Might Think”]

[The Cars – “My Best Friend’s Girl”]

[The Cars – “Just What I Needed”]

[The Cars – “Moving In Stereo”]

[Nina Simone Induction]

[Lauryn Hill – Nina Simone Tribute – “Ne Me Quitte Pas,” “Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair” and “Feeeling Good”]

[Nina Simone Tribute – “I Put A Spell On You”]

[Ann Wilson & Jerry Cantrell – Chris Cornell Tribute]

[The Moody Blues Induction Speech]

[The Moody Blues – “Nights In White Satin” | Captured by MarchofTheRashbaum]

[The Moody Blues – “I’m Just A Singer (In A Rock & Roll Band)”]

[The Moody Blues – “Your Wildest Dreams”]

[The Moody Blues – “Ride My See-Saw”]

[Hat Tip – Rolling Stone]
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