Late pop superstar Whitney Houston, rock group Dave Matthews Band and murdered hip-hop artist The Notorious B.I.G. landed among first-time nominees announced on Tuesday for possible induction in 2020 into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
A total of 16 nominees were revealed, spanning genres from pop to rap, electronica and heavy metal. Others nominated for the first time included 1980s pop/rock singer Pat Benatar, Irish rock group Thin Lizzy, and grunge band Soundgarden, whose lead singer Chris Cornell died in 2017. Authorities ruled his death a suicide.
Houston, the “I Will Always Love You” singer who ranks as one of the most successful female recording stars of all time, died in 2012 after drowning in a hotel bathroom at age 48. The Notorious B.I.G. was killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles in 1997. Inductees will be selected based on ballots sent by the Cleveland-based Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to more than 1,000 artists, historians and members of the music industry.
The general public also can weigh in online or at the Rock Hall. The top five vote-getters will be submitted as a single fan ballot among the hundreds of other ballots. Other first-time nominees for induction in 2020 were The Doobie Brothers, Motorhead and T-Rex. The rest of the nominees have been nominated before but not made the final cut.
They are Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, Judas Priest, Kraftwerk, MC5, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, and Todd Rundgren. Inductees will be announced in January and inducted into the Hall of Fame at a ceremony in Cleveland in May. In previous years, between five and seven acts have typically won a place in the Hall.