Sheryl Crow, Missy Elliott and Chaka Khan make the crowd go wild at Rock & Roll Hall of Fame
November 4, 2023 -NEW YORK (AP) — Sheryl Crow and Olivia Rodrigo kicked off the 2023 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony Friday night and Missy Elliott closed the show more than four hours later with a roof-shaking set, as the hall celebrated a strong representation of women and Black artists.
Chaka Khan, Kate Bush, “Soul Train” creator Don Cornelius, The Spinners and DJ Kool Herc were also inducted in a celebration of funk, art-rock, R&B and hip-hop, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary. Country music was represented by Willie Nelson, punk had Rage Against the Machine, the late George Michael repped pure pop and Link Wray defined guitar heroes.
The ceremony’s strong representation of Black and women artists this year came not long after the hall removed Rolling Stone co-founder Jann Wenner from its board of directors. Wenner, who also co-founded the hall, had said that Black and female musicians “didn’t articulate at the level” of the white musicians featured in his new book of interviews. He later apologized.
The new inductees’ talent seemed to show how misguided Wenner’s initial stance was. Elton John’s songwriting partner, Bernie Taupin, drew cheers when he slyly said he was honored to join the 2023 class with such “profoundly articulate women” and “articulate Black artists.”’
Queen Latifah introduced Missy Elliott, who became the first female hip-hop artist in the rock hall, smashing the boundaries of fashion and style along the way. “Nothing sounded the same after Missy came onto the scene,” Latifah said. “She is avant garde without even trying.”
Elliott then appeared onstage at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center as if beamed from a spaceship and with smoke machines pumping, a kinetic light show and a massive digital screen working overtime, performed “Get Ur Freak On,” “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly),” “Work It,” “Pass That Dutch” and “Lose Control.”
“Missy will wear you out!” Queen Latifah joked after the set. “This woman goes hard for the art.” Elliott, in a sparkly bucket hat, had her mother in attendance, the first time she saw her daughter perform live.
Elliott noted hip-hop’s anniversary, 50 years after its birth in New York. “To be standing here, it means so much to me,” she said. Of her fellow inductees, she said: “I’m honored just to be in a room with you all.”
The show kicked off when Crow joined by Rodrigo — both in black — traded verses as they both played guitars. Stevie Nicks later joined Crow for a performance of “Strong Enough” and Peter Frampton came out to help sing “Everyday Is a Winding Road.”