September 2, 1995: Rock + Roll Hall of Fame Opens

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Rock HallAlthough it started its annual inductions in 1986, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame didn’t have a “hall,” per se, until its I.M. Pei-designed museum on the shores of Lake Erie opened on September 2, 1995. The new inductees included Al Green, the Allman Brothers Band, Frank Zappa, Janis Joplin, Led Zeppelin, and Neil Young, among others.

To mark the occasion, a concert was held at Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium and simulcast om HBO. Appearing on the show were a range of artists from classic rock to (at the time) contemporary acts appearing in once-in-lifetime collaborations.

The show starred veterans like Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, John Fogerty, The Kinks, Eric Burdon, Booker T & the MGs, Aretha Franklin, Al Green and others, alongside rock founders like Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and Johnny Cash. What a night!

Highlights included: Berry launching the show with “Johnny B. Goode” backed by Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band, who also do the same with Jerry Lee Lewis on “Great Balls of Fire” and “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On.”

Watch Springsteen introduce “one of my all-time heroes… a man who doesn’t play rock and roll, he is rock and roll…”

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Watch Bob Dylan perform “All Along the Watchtower” and later bring Springsteen on-stage to perform “Forever Young” together

Related: The Rock Hall’s inaugural induction ceremony in 1986

Watch Led Zeppelin play a favorite

Watch the Allman Brothers Band perform “One Way Out”

And here’s Johnny Cash performing “Folsom Prison Blues,” followed by “Ring of Fire,” as he’s joined by John Mellencamp

Although the Hall of Fame nominations and inductions prompt annual debates among and complaints from fans, the Museum is another matter. Its collection and exhibits are a delight for anyone who values rock music.

Best Classic Bands Staff

Best Classic Bands Staff

The BCB team brings you the latest Breaking News, Contests, On This Day rock history stories, Classic Videos, retro-Charts and more.
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