20 Artists and Bands Ignored by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame


We are well into 2020 and like every other year, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has announced the list of the musicians that made their way into it. The 2020 Inductees include the prolific names like Whitney Houston, Doobie Brothers, and the famous Nine-Inch Nails.

In parallel to the Inductees, there are well-known names who have been seriously snubbed is just criminal: Dave Matthews Band, Kraftwerk, MC5, Thin Lazy and Todd Rundgren are to name a few!

Considering all the efforts the artists have put in throughout the years and the Inductees who got the Fame, here are some of the deserving artists and bands who were sadly ignored by the Rock Hall!


20. Warren Zevon

No. of Years Ignored: 26

Albums Released: 12

Performance on Charts: It was 1978 that brought Warren Zevon into the spotlight. The year marked the arrival of the third album Excitable Boy which went Platinum that same year. Werewolves of London managed to be ranked at #8. Apart from this, the artist did not have outstanding numbers except for the final album, Wind which earned spot at #12 and was Gold certified.

Achievements:  Warren Zevon did not come into the spotlight overnight. It was his persistent struggle which gave him much recognition. Started as a songwriter, Zevon soon became a backing (sort of a freelancer) musician, and then a Rockstar himself. Witty enough, Zevon’s songs manifested a touch of class in their lyrics. Though he died in 2003, Warren Zevon remains an inspiration for the many who want to pursue a career in Music industry.


19. Television

No. of Years Ignored: 20

Albums Released: 3

Performance on Charts: In the United States, the Band could not get enough appreciation. In UK, however, their first and the second albums—Marquee Moon and Adventure—were ranked at 28 and 7 at its peak respectively.

Achievements:  Television were snubbed in real terms: No fancy awards, no distinctions. Yet, they remain influential to date. Marquee Moon, to critics, was a real album which needs further appreciation. It was ranked 128th in the list of 500 of the greatest albums that was announced by Rolling Stone; NME went quite a steps further and chose to keep it at the Fourth place!


18. Nick Drake

No. of Years Ignored: 26

Albums Released: 3

Performance on Charts: Nick Drake is one of those artists who were regarded more after their deaths. When he was alive, his albums were not sold much. When he died, his fame started to increase. Rolling Stone acknowledged his art, and his final album Pink Moon was put at the 321st place in the list of the Greatest Albums.

Achievements:  We are not alone to regard Nick Drake—same was done by the greats like REM, Lucinda Williams and many more!


17. Iron Maiden

No. of Years Ignored: 16

Albums Released: 16

Performance on Charts: Here’s what is surprising about Iron Maiden: Around 90 million copies of their albums have been sold around the world—that too without any radio and TV support! Here is icing on the cake: a decent number  of Iron Maiden’s albums have received Gold and Platinum ranks in 1982, 1983, ‘84, ‘85, ‘86, and in ’88!

Achievements:  With a streak of more than 2,000 live shows coupled with prominent awards, it is quite unfortunate that they have not been added to the Rock Hall!


16. Rage Against the Machine

No. of Years Ignored: 3

Albums Released: 4

Performance on Charts: It is quite well understood that Rage Against the Machine did possess some political inclinations. Yet when it comes to the record-breaking aspect of their albums, what’s more can be said than that the records and albums have hit the 1st place along with several Platinum certifications! 1992, 1996, 1999 and 200—they were the Rage’s years.

Achievements:  The Rage has managed to win two Grammy awards (“Tire Me” and the “Guerilla Radio” were the ones to be awarded)—and they were nominated SIX times. Though they are not acknowledged by the Institute in Ohio, Kerrang was understanding enough to do that. And there was another award by NME in 2010. Still, nothing from Ohio—yet.


15. New Order

No. of Years Ignored: 14

Albums Released: 10

Performance on Charts: New Order, too, have decent numbers and distinctions: 68 releases, 2 Platinums, 3 Golds, 3 Silvers and an NME award for Blue Monday! All in all, New Order remained a prominent rock band in the UK and around the world.

Achievements:  On charts, New Order were unstoppable and record-breaker. Apart from that, their success was quite limited: they were nominated only once for Grammys—that too for the Dance Recording. Other than that, none. Regardless of this, the band is quite influential as they introduced a distinct music to the industry.


14. Pixies

No. of Years Ignored: 8

Albums Released: 6

Performance on Charts: Pixie’s Surfer Rosa was there in UK charts for more than a year. At its peak, it sat at the second place. The album secured its Gold certification in 2005. Then comes the Doolittle that secured 98th place is US and 8th in UK Charts; the album was recognized as a Gold one in 1995. And lastly, the Bossanova—70th place in US, 3rd in UK.

Achievements:  Pixies is well-known for their Surfer Rosa as well as the Doolittle albums. And these two are sometimes hailed as most influential and the greatest ones of 1980s. In 2009, Pixies got their first-ever Grammys nomination for their Minotaur. The Hall in Ohio is still reluctant though!


13. Devo

No. of Years Ignored: 18

Albums Released: 9

Performance on Charts: First of the sets from Devo that hit the shelves was regarded everywhere in the world—it took the 12th spot in UK and the 78th in the States. The second album, which was released in 1980, took their fame to the next level when it was awarded Platinum in the US. Apart from these two, the ones released in 1981 and 2010 are noteworthy as they were trended at 23rd and 30th place in America, respectively.

Achievements:  The outfit was awarded a Moog Award for the Innovation in 2010. What is unique about the band is the extraordinary innovation they bring to music. Not only that, they have been so influential that they manage to have a significant impact on New Wave music, Industrial music, and others as well. The outfit was nominated by Rock Hall, but could not win a place!


12. Pat Benatar

No. of Years Ignored: 21

Albums Released: 12

Performance on Charts: Pat Benatar. What should we say about her! She has got an incredible profile: albums that were awarded Platinum multiple times (e.g. Precious Time); five of her albums were certified as Platinum; three gold; 15 of her songs made it into Top 40; and four of her were crowned the Number 1 spot (e.g. We Belong, Invincible, etc.). If that could not convince you, she holds the record of selling around 30 million copies around the world!

Achievements:  The musician was in her prime in the 1980s: she won four consecutive awards (1981-84) at the Grammy’s for the best Vocal Performance by a Female. The pop music industry knows her very well, yet the ones sitting in Ohio are not convinced just yet!


11. Sonic Youth

No. of Years Ignored: 13

Albums Released: 16

Performance on Charts: The Sonic Youth have been showered with a success of moderate level. Their last album, that came in 2009, floated at 18th place in the US Billboard 200, and at the top on the Tastemakers Albums.

Achievements:  Outside the realm of Charts, Sonic Youth has won just one award for the Innovation at Q Awards in 2009. Apart from this, nothing. That is quite surprising considering the fact that the band released 16 albums and 46 video performances. Regardless of all this, the band did influence several strands of the music.


10. Brian Eno

No. of Years Ignored: 21

Albums Released: 26

Performance on Charts: Brian Eno hit the industry for the first time in 1974 with his solo album “Here Come The Warm Jets”. The album was his most highly rated album of his career that scored a U.S billboard rating of no 151. However in 2016, he released an album, named “The Ship” which proved a huge success of his career. The Ship instantly captured electronic billboard charting and took first place over it. This album even broke the record of Brian previous album “My life in the Bush of Ghosts” which was released by collaborating David Byrne in 1981.

Achievements:  Brian Eno has successfully produced albums with famous names like U2, Coldplay, talking heads etc. In addition to this he also won awards like Grammy and BRIT. Brian is also the founder of “Ambient Music” which makes him more than the word “Influential”. He had been a part of Roxy Music-English rock music band, and deserves much more fame than its current status.


9. Kate Bush

No. of Years Ignored: 17

Albums Released: 10

Performance on Charts: Kate Bush is considered to be one of thosei successful female singers who have performed solo, in last three decades. She became famous, at the age of 19, when she sang “Wuthering Heights”, which became the No. 1 song in the UK. The song was also written by Kate and it remained on top for a period of four weeks in the UK’s chart for singles. This was just a start, Kate produced ten albums out of which three masterpieces topped UK’s album chart, with addition to this, she also gave 25 singles which ranked in the list of Top 40 with 6 in the list of Top 10 hits.

Achievements:  Kate had won three Grammy Awards followed by 1987 Brit’s Award for the best female singer in the UK. In addition to this, she won Ivor Novello in 2002 because of her exceptional contribution in the UK’s music industry. She was also appointed by the Royal Queen Elizabeth II as Britain commander of the Excellent Order, in 2013. Her album “Hounds of Love” was rated 17th in the list of top 100 albums of Consequence of Sound’s. Despite all her outstanding contributions, she was continuously being ignored, till 2018 when she was nominated for the Hall of Fame—and did not win it!


8. Björk

No. of Years Ignored: 18

Albums Released: 9

Performance on Charts: Björk, aka ‘One Little Indian’ from 2003, comes 8th in the list. She has successfully sold 15 million copies of her album in the whole world. Her album “Volta” which was released in 2007 ranked no. 1 in Billboard’s Electronics  and remained there for almost nine weeks. The album hit a sale of half a million copies in the first three months.

Achievements:  Björk has won five BRIT’s with a collection of four MTV’s music awards. She has been nominated 15 times from 1996 to 2002 in Grammy awards but failed to get one. In addition to this, she also received a nomination of Best Academy award for her song “I’ve Seen It All”. Summarizing all, Bjork has a stack of 153 awards from a total of 271 nominations.


7. Soundgarden

No. of Years Ignored: 9

Albums Released: 6

Performance on Charts: Soundgarden is famous for its album “Superunknown” which was crowned first in Billboard ratings of 1994. Almost 310,000 copies of this album were sold all over the world in the first week of its release and received a certification of 5x Platinum. However, this was the flagship album of their career but they successfully released another similar album in 1991 named as “Badmotorfinger”. The album received a 2x platinum certification and also international recognition.

Achievements:  Soundgarden won two Grammys awards: one for Spoonman and other for Black Hole Sun, from a total of nine nominations. Despite winning awards, the band was successful in completely changing the game of rock music and paved the way for modern rock. The band was one of the pioneers of Grunge movement which introduced psychedelia with metal blend in the 90’s era. Although the band was keen to be nominated in 2011 but was neglected until 2020.


6. The Smiths

No. of Years Ignored: 12

Albums Released: 4

Performance on Charts: The Smiths has been successful in selling almost 2.7 million copies of their 1992 album SoundScan in the United States only. The band has successfully produced two other albums , The Queen Is Dead of 1986 and Strangeways, Here We Come of 1987, which went viral in the United States and received exceptional recognition. The Queen was even ranked 70 on the billboard chart of 200 with a playing time of 17 weeks.

Achievements:  The band is considered to be the progenitor of Britpop explosion which laid the foundation for famous bands like The Stone Roses, Oasis and many more. According to BBC The Smiths was a symbol of deeper devotion similar to Beatles in Britain. The Smiths scored 69th position in COS Top Albums.


5. Kraftwerk

No. of Years Ignored: 25

Albums Released: 5

Performance on Charts: Kraftwerk, although a pure German band with most of their work having been labeled for overseas, released a famous album in 1974 “Autobahn” in Stateside. The album immediately took up a place of No 5 on Billboard’s 200. Some other prominent works of this band include Radio-Activity of 1975, TEE of 1977 and the Computer World of 1981. All of these albums are labeled as silver by BPI and/or SNEP.

Achievements:  Kraftwerk hit the industry with a crazy electronic music which laid the foundation for many other funky music genres. Kraftwerk’s work also got recognized by Grammys and they were successful in getting three awards along with an award of lifetime achievement in 2014. The band won the Hall of Fame in 2015 for album Autobahn. In addition to this, best dance album and 3-D Catalogue awards are also a part of Kraftwerk awards list.