My 5 Favorite Rock Artists Not in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Hello everyone. It is everybody’s favorite intern, “The Big Homie” Darrin Brown. As a frequent listener of Champaign FM radio’s Extra 96.9 iconic rock station, I hear many great artists through the speakers of my Equinox. What sometimes comes to mind is that I hear some artist quite frequently and their wide array of songs, yet they are not in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. I am here to give some of these artists some recognition. Here are my 5 favorites who have not received the honor in Cleveland.

1. Styx

Its roots being in Chicago beginning in the late 1960s band Tradewinds, Styx is a legendary band in rock music history. What makes Styx so amazing is the variety of tunes they put out, ranging from solid hard rock songs to more soft, melodic storytelling. While this is what made the band legendary, it ultimately led to turmoil between guitarist Tommy Shaw and lead singer Dennis DeYoung. Nonetheless, Styx is one of my favorite bands ever.

Top 3 Favorite Songs:

1. “Mr. Roboto”

2. “Lady”

3. “Renegade”

2. REO Speedwagon

The number 2 spot on my list also belongs to an Illinois band even closer to home for me. REO Speedwagon formed in 1968 in Champaign on the campus of the University of Illinois. Keyboardist Neal Doughty and Alan Gratzer started the band which grew into one of the top arena rock performers of the 1980s along with lead singer and later addition Kevin Cronin. Both Styx and REO Speedwagon are legendary for their arena performances, yet both find themselves without a spot in Cleveland.

Top 3 Favorite Songs:

1. “Roll with the Changes”

2. “Keep on Loving You”

3. “Can’t Fight this Feeling”

3. Billy Squier

The New Englander has a few songs in 96.9’s rotation, and I enjoy them all. Squier got his heavy interest in music in his teens through listening to Eric Clapton, and after some on and off stints with multiple bands he found his success as a solo act in the 1980s. Squier pursued his solo act during a peak time, as MTV’s 1981 launch saw many of his songs with airtime on the music channel.

Top 3 Favorite Songs:

1. “My Kinda Lover”

2. “The Stroke”

3. “Lonely is the Night”

4. Bad Company

The British hard rock group founded in 1973 with bassist Boz Burrell, blues guitarist Mick Ralphs, strong singer Paul Rodgers, and drummer Simon Kirke. The group found themselves together after they split from their respective bands and found success with their debut album named after the band in 1974, which topped the album charts and featured a #1 hit single. The group went on hiatus in the late 70s and early 80s before putting out some more work in the 80s and 90s. Their original work throughout the 70s is my favorite.

Top 3 Favorite Songs:

1. “Shooting Star”

2. “Rock ‘N’ Roll Fantasy”

3. “Bad Company”

5. Pat Benatar

One of my favorite rock bands of all time is Heart, the duo of Ann and Nancy Wilson. They are amazing, have so many great songs, and are recognized by being inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. However, another female artist is highly instrumental in the emergence of a female voice in rock and roll music following the emergence of Diana Ross, and she does not nearly get enough credit for her work. Pat Benatar was born in Brooklyn in 1953, and through her work in multiple club venues found herself a record deal in the late 1970s before becoming a well-known powerful female rock voice in the 1980s.

Top 3 Favorite Songs:

1. “Shadows of the Night”

2. “We Belong”

3. “Love is a Battlefield”

Those are my 5 favorite rock artists who are not in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Let me know what you guys think about the list and if you have artists in mind that did not make the list. Thank you!

Darrin D. Brown

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