As with any artistic awards-giving organization, it can often seem like The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame exists less to honor achievements and more to start arguments. Certainly a few squabbles will spark off the just-announced class of nominees for induction in 2015:
- The Paul Butterfield Blues Band
- Green Day
- Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
- The Marvelettes
- Nine Inch Nails
- Lou Reed
- The Smiths
- The Spinners
- Stevie Ray Vaughan
- Bill Withers
It goes the same every year. Pick your snub of choice (Deep Purple? Janet Jackson?), your always-a-nominee-never-an-inductee of choice (poor Chic), and you’re how-are-they-not-already-inducted artist of choice (Lou Reed, N.W.A.). Then fight.
Judging from the headlines so far, the newest and splashiest commentary-creator will be Green Day. The pop-punk act’s first album was in 1989, the latest year of eligibility for consideration, and their presence on the list has been received with some head scratching. “Green Day?” asks Jesse David Fox at Vulture. “Yep, Green Day—that band from your childhood bedroom.”
Your childhood bedroom: The “your” is very specific there. It’s Millennials. Green Day’s presence, in a way like no nominees before it except perhaps the Red Hot Chili Peppers, ushers in a distinct era of music that almost butts up against the present.