Each year, just like clockwork, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announces its new inductees in a conspiracy to make me feel old. Well, maybe not. But ever since the Beastie Boys joined the club made up of the likes of The Eagles and Steely Dan (my dad’s era of music), each year another cold reminder comes along telling me another band I’ve enjoyed over the years has hit the 25 year point of existence, thus reminding me that I’m not a young pup anymore.
And I’m only 33.
Another sting was seeing one of my favorite bands, Nine Inch Nails, on the ballot. NIN was my high school soundtrack (for the record, I was not a moody teen beyond my freshman year). Green Day I really did not get into until “American Idiot,” which was a pretty bold album for a band that had titled their most popular album up to that moment after excrement. But they were wildly popular to the kids around me in those old, now ancient days called the 1990s. A time when indie bands were actually played on the radio. Granted, that window was not open very long, but to think there was a time when Pavement and Sonic Youth were in the same radio and MTV rotation as Nirvana, Weezer and Beck is pretty weird by today’s standards. Well, the concept of MTV playing music videos is so foreign these days, I sound like Abe Simpson describing the days he wore an onion on his belt when I talk about it.
Yet, when I saw Green Day was being inducted, it was another reminder that I’m not getting any younger. That was a band that was new when I was growing up, and not in a little kid sort of way. “Dookie” came out around the time I started getting into what was then called alternative rock (now it’s modern rock, last time I checked). Now the music I grew up with is considered classic rock. And that creeps me out.
On a better note, Lou Reed will finally be inducted as a solo artist. Even though that should have happened a long time ago, it’s still nice to see him getting in as a solo act. Other inductees include Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Bill Withers and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, all solid inductees that do not remind me of the passage of time.