Rock Hall royalty hitting red carpet to kick off 2018 induction ceremony

Carla Harmon
April 15, 2018

It was part of a lengthy, and profanity-filled, speech in which Stern, true to form, simultaneously praised and mocked the group, the first of this year's class to be inducted tonight. She added that Bon Jovi should also be in the Hall of Fame for "wife-picking".

After belting out a vocally challenged "Wanted Dead or Alive" and leading the crowd in a singalong, Stern thanked all of rock "n" roll, then turned toward his longtime friends. "We help people get through".

Brothers Mark and David Knopfler, of English rockers Dire Straits, won't attend the event, according to bassist John Illsley.

Last month, lead singer Mark Knopfler expressed frustration with the Rock Hall to a Cleveland reporter in an online forum, saying that he was refusing to come because the Hall would not pay his travel expenses.

Tharpe will be inducted by Brittany Howard, of Alabama Shakes. Mary J. Blige will induct Simone, who died in 2003. "I'm honoured to induct Sister Rosetta Tharpe into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame", Howard yelled following a video package featuring past interviews from Johnny Cash, Aretha Franklin and others praising Tharpe's musicality.

Killers frontman Brandon Flowers will induct The Cars, whose four surviving members - Ric Ocasek, Elliot Easton, Greg Hawkes and David Robinson - will give a reunion performance.

Tharpe died in 1973 at the age of 58, but her music lives on and is being appreciated by a new generation just learning of her legacy.

The Cars, founded in Boston in 1976 and known for combining New Wave and classic rock sounds, were inducted this year after being nominated twice before.

But he said the Cars provided him entertainment while growing up in a small Utah town in a Mormon household.

"We did it mom!", he said, earning cheers from the audience.

Simone, who won induction on her first nomination, was widely considered one of the most influential singers of the 20th century who brought the sensibilities of classical music to gospel and jazz. The ceremony will air May 5 on HBO.

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