Ted Nugent Rails on Rock Hall

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Ted Nugent is grabbing headlines for comments he made about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s criteria for its induction process. In an interview with KNAC.com that was published on December 20, 2021, that is now spreading across the interweb, the Motor City madman rails against the Rock Hall, specifically citing their choices of ABBA, Patti Smith, Grandmaster Flash, and Madonna as “dishonest.” He offered such classic rock bands as Triumph and Styx as far more deserving.

Nugent was speaking with the site’s Ruben Mosqueda about his upcoming album, Detroit Muscle, coming April 29, 2022, via Pavement Music. The subject turned to the Rock Hall when the interviewer asked, “What’s kept you out of that institution? You have the songs, the catalog, the influence. Is it as simple as your politics, your love for hunting or your support for the First and the Second Amendments that has kept you out? Or is it even that important to you to get in at this point?

“I don’t take it personal,” he said. “I think I’m in ‘the ultimate’ Hall of Fame with ‘real’ and ‘true’ lovers of my music! I’m not offended that I’m not there. But not because of me, but for the fans. Why isn’t a band like Triumph in there, but Grandmaster Flash is?! That’s just dishonest! Why are Patti Smith, ABBA and Madonna in the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, but not Styx?! Are you kidding me?!

“You can only explain that is that the people who made those decisions are just plain rotten people! The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame should genuflect to Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, the Motown [house band, the] Funk Brothers, are you kidding me?! How dare you put Grandmaster Flash, ABBA and Madonna in that?!”

Nugent clearly knows his rock and roll roots. “The people who run the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame have been dishonest! It would be an honor to be part of an institution that celebrates the founding fathers of rock ‘n’ roll, like Chuck, Bo, Little Richard, James Brown, and going back to Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters and Sam and Dave and Wilson Pickett! I would be honored to share that! What a middle finger to the ‘real’ heroes of rock ‘n’ roll and rhythm and blues to put in those other people!!!! Grandmaster Flash?! Really?! Why don’t we go down to Chuck Berry’s grave and piss on it!!! Are you kidding me?! That’s not a Ted Nugent presumption, that’s not an opinion…the evidence is overwhelming!!! You wanna know how to get into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame? You get ‘high’ with the board!

Read the complete interview here.

Nugent was born on December 13, 1948. After 26 years, he resigned from the Board of Directors of the National Rifle Association in 2021 due to “ongoing scheduling conflicts.”

Nugent has carved a permanent place in rock ’n’ roll history as a guitar-shredding showman, selling more than 40 million albums and performing in excess of 6,700 live shows.

Related: When an audience member aimed a gun at Nugent

Best Classic Bands Staff

11 Comments so far

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  1. Colorado Slim
    #1 Colorado Slim 1 January, 2022, 02:14

    Wow. For once, I agree with the Nuge. Except for the Patti Smith comment. What was he thinking? Todd Rundgren had it right years ago: Madonna? I don’t think so.

    Reply this comment
  2. Sonic lives!
    #2 Sonic lives! 1 January, 2022, 03:11

    Ted probably remembers Patti Smith cussing him out live on air on W4-FM in Detroit circa 1977. A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame worthy moment right there.

    Reply this comment
  3. Mark69
    #3 Mark69 1 January, 2022, 08:17

    I agree. For example, why was Kraftwerk put in, but Emerson, Lake and Palmer have never even been nominated? Rock “Hall” is a joke. Apparently, you gotta pay to play. Like Hollywood Walk of Fame.

    Reply this comment
  4. JCB
    #4 JCB 1 January, 2022, 08:22

    I don’t agree with Ted about much, but he’s right on the money about the Hall. No Guess Who, no Paul Rodgers, but we have Jay Z? I agree, it’s shameful.

    Reply this comment
  5. Da Mick
    #5 Da Mick 1 January, 2022, 12:01

    I’ve certainly railed enough on here about the same topic. I’m not going to comment about Nugent’s comments on here, because I think he’s a bit of a disgrace to Rock n’ Roll himself, despite his reverence to the originators.

    At this point, it’s a foregone conclusion that, sadly, the RRHF is nothing like what its name implies, or aspires to be. I’ve accepted that. The only thing about now that really makes me sad is how people keep expressing their dismay over how people who are deserving of “Hall of Fame” stature haven’t gotten it, and many who have, don’t deserve it. It’s not what you think, hope, and want it to be, Folks, so get over it, and spare yourself the frustration of their movements that don’t seem to jibe with their “mission statement.”

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    • Hulk
      Hulk 1 January, 2022, 15:38

      Please elaborate on why you feel Mr. Nugent is a “disgrace” to Rock and Roll?

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  6. The Worm
    #6 The Worm 1 January, 2022, 13:45

    DA Mick is right about what he said as far as Nugent nothing good today but the group that did Journey to the Center if Your Mind was a great song

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  7. RedRoc
    #7 RedRoc 1 January, 2022, 19:46

    You’re several years late, Ted. They have already pissed on Mr Berry’s grave numerous times by inducting a bastardized group who aren’t worthy to be in the same sentence, room or building. The RRHOShame is discredited. It has dishonored the most worthy inductees along with those it refuses to nominate. But Jay-Z! Madonna! et al Really?

    Reply this comment
  8. Mike
    #8 Mike 1 January, 2022, 20:03

    So would The Beatles qualify for entrance to a Rap Hall of Fame?

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  9. Roadawg59
    #9 Roadawg59 3 January, 2022, 20:44

    Yepper. I have never been a fan of the RRHOF, just like the Grammy’s or any other pat them on the back crap. There are too many that deserve to be in there that won’t make it. Look how long it took to get Rush in. It’s all b.s. Nuge is exactly right. RRHOF are nothing more than a disgrace and a joke.

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  10. JJ Michaels
    #10 JJ Michaels 7 January, 2022, 04:51

    The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was orignally going to be a Chuck E. Cheese restaurant but Chuck E. Cheese did not want to be associated with such shysters. Thus the RRHF was created and everyone who walks through the door is fleeced.

    Reply this comment

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