Cetera Won’t Play at Chicago’s Rock Hall Induction

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Chicago in the early '80s via the band's website. Cetera is third from left.

Chicago in the early ’80s via the band’s website. Cetera is third from left.

Although his name appears first (alphabetically) on the list of Chicago members to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Class of 2016, Peter Cetera will not be joining his former bandmates.

Robert Lamm retracted his comments from a recent interview with Radio.com, in which he’d mistakenly said that Cetera would be playing. “He has emphatically declined,” the keyboard player told Billboard via email. “My email exchanges with Cetera were misinterpreted by me, and I’ve apologized to him, and likewise apologize to the music press community and fans.”

The official announcement from the Rock Hall lists Chicago’s inductees thusly: Peter Cetera, Terry Kath, Robert Lamm, Lee Loughnane, James Pankow, Walter Parazaider, Danny Seraphine.

Prior to leaving the band in 1985, Cetera sang lead on many of the classic rock band’s hit singles like “25 or 6 to 4,” “If You Leave Me Now,” “Feelin’ Stronger Every Day,” “Baby, What a Big Surprise” and “If You Leave Me Now.” Although he continues to perform, he has not yet commented on the band’s Rock Hall induction. (Neither has former drummer Danny Seraphine, who left the band in 1990.) His representatives also have yet to confirm whether or not he will be attending the ceremony.

Here’s the band during what some have called their jazzy, live peak. This performance at Tanglewood in 1970 features a blistering guitar solo by Terry Kath.

The drama doesn’t end there, though. Cetera announced on his website on December 23rd (post-mix-up) that he’ll be making a big announcement come New Year’s that has to do with – yes, you guessed it, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

“Tell all your friends, tell the press, tell radio, TV, newspapers, why you can even tell the Pres, Hillary, Trump, everyone,” Cetera said. “I will make an important announcement on this site after the New Year that will shock the WOOORRLLDD…regarding my participation in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Until then, have a merry Christmas and a happy new year, and I’ll speak to you shortly after New Year’s Day with my earthshaking announcement.”

Lamm and the rest of Chicago have been very enthusiastic about welcoming Cetera back for performances after 30 years. “I’ve said this before, and I’ve said it to him,” Lamm said in his Radio.com interview. “If there’s ever a time that we can share the stage again, this is it. I think it could have a huge emotional impact on the audience… Anything’s possible, in terms of what could be.”

Chicago joins long overdue classic acts Cheap Trick, Deep Purple, Steve Miller and others this year as part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2016. Click here for Best Classic Bands‘ previous coverage of the Class of 2016.

Best Classic Bands Staff
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