Link Wray was nominated to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. But as everyone knows, he didn’t make the cut.
Since that time, Questlove and Steven Van Zandt spoke publicly in support of Link Wray. Jimmy Page and Jimmy Fallon played air guitar to a few chords of Rumble on the Tonight Show. The Governor of North Carolina declared Link’s birthday “Link Wray Day.” His profile had never been higher.
I had high hopes that this would be the year for Link Wray in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
After all, this is the man who...
- invented the power chord
- was the first to use intentional distortion in a rock and roll recording
- was the first Native American to sell over a million rock and roll records
- is in the top 50 of Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 GREATEST GUITARISTS
- has one of only 40 rock and roll songs in the National Recording Registry
- has had numerous Rock Hall inductees cite him as a career influence
- has the only rock and roll song (an INSTRUMENTAL) banned for fear it would incite teen violence
- played rock and roll for half a century, continually releasing new music
- and so much more
...would most certainly warrant an induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame after a 31 year wait!
Nope. For reasons known only to the Nominating Committee, Link Wray was bypassed for nomination to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015.
Rock Hall Nominating Committee members Steven Van Zandt and Questlove have publicly supported Link Wray’s induction. To those gentlemen, and other members who supported Link, thank you.
There are those that blaze the trail, and there are those that reap the rewards. Link Wray was a trailblazer.
Link Wray was ahead of his time. Maybe one day the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will catch up with him.