Rapper Tupac Shakur and Janet Jackson lead the pack of 19 artists nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017.

Rapper Tupac Shakur and Janet Jackson have been nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017. (Courtesy Photos)

Rapper Tupac Shakur and Janet Jackson have been nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017. (Courtesy Photos)

More than 800 industry insiders that comprise the Rock Hall voting body in addition to members of the public will have a chance to vote for their favorite (s) of the nominees, who were announced this week. The results will be issued in December, and the finalists will be inducted next April during a ceremony at Brooklyn’s Barclay Center.This is the first year of Shakur’s eligibility, marked by the release of his debut album, “2Pacalypse Now” in 1991 (artists become eligible 25 years after their first release). The rapper was known for his provocative often fiercely real lyrics and was one of the most influential artists of his time.

“Every rapper who grew up in the Nineties owes something to Tupac,” wrote 50 Cent of the rapper, whom he called a “poet,” in Rolling Stones’ tribute to the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time.”

Tupac’s estate issued a statement on the artist’s website expressing gratitude for this Hall nomination, which read in part: “We are incredibly honored by the nomination, and with it the recognition of how impactful Tupac’s words, music and artistic mission remain today. He set out to inspire, to provoke, and to give a voice to those who didn’t have one.”

Unlike, her former co-star (Tupac and Janet Jackson starred in 1993’s “Poetic Justice), Jackson is a sophomore nominee. The “Rhythm Nation” artist became eligible in 2007 but wasn’t nominated until last year when she failed to make the final cut.

Other African-American artists reappearing on the list this year include, queen of funk Chaka Khan; disco group Chic, who is being nominated for the 11th time; and singer/songwriter Joe Tex, whose unique sound and style have had a significant influence on mainstream music.

Another Black freshman nominee is Bad Brains. Formed in Washington, D.C., in 1977, the band offers a sound that is a unique mix of hardcore punk, reggae and heavy metal. With over 15 albums under their belt, they have influenced artists such as The Beastie Boys, Lauryn Hill and Living Colour.

See the full list of nominees at: https://www.rockhall.com/vote

 

Zenitha Prince

Special to the AFRO