Today, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation announced the Alice Cooper Band, Neil Diamond, Dr. John, Darlene Love and Tom Waits as its 2011 performer inductees. Also being inducted this year as individual recipients of the Ahmet Ertegun Award are Jac Holzman and Art Rupe. The Award for Musical Excellence (previously the Sidemen category) will be presented to Leon Russell. The 26th annual ceremony will take place on Monday, March 14, 2011, at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City and be broadcast on Fuse, Madison Square Garden’s national music television network.

“We are pleased to welcome these artists and executives into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” said Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation President and CEO Joel Peresman. “They truly represent the variety of people that have defined and continue to influence music and the business of Rock and Roll.”

Before there was Ozzy Osbourne, Marilyn Manson or KISS, there was Alice Cooper, the original self-proclaimed “rock villain.” Born Vincent Furnier, Cooper and his mighty band of the same name – lead guitarist Glen Buxton, rhythm guitarist Michael Bruce, bass player Dennis Dunaway and drummer Neal Smith – pioneered the dark spectacle of heavy metal with their huge blues-rock sound and extravagant stage show. Drawing from horror movies and vaudeville, Cooper brought a new level of visual theatrics to arenas with guillotines, electric chairs, boa constrictors and fake blood; their 1973 tour broke box office records previously held by the Rolling Stones, and raised the bar for major rock tours. What made it stick were some of the catchiest, most reckless hard-rock songs of all time: “Eighteen,” “School’s Out,” “No More Mr. Nice Guy.” Along with the New York Dolls and David Bowie, Alice Cooper was a starting point for the glam rock of the 1970s; it’s impossible to imagine the hair metal of the 1980s without them. You can hear and see the band’s influence in bands from the Sex Pistols to Guns n’ Roses. The original lineup split in the mid-Seventies, and singer Cooper would continue on with an evolving lineup; in the meantime, the pure shock value of America’s first shock rockers has faded, but their legacy is safe.

The performer Inductees are:
– Alice Cooper Band
– Neil Diamond
– Dr. John
– Darlene Love
– Tom Waits

Ahmet Ertegun Award recipients (nonperformers):
– Jac Holzman
– Art Rupe

Award for Musical Excellence Award (previously the Sidemen category):
– Leon Russell

The 2011 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame performer inductees were chosen by more than 500 voters of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation. Artists are eligible for inclusion in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25 years after the release of their first recording.

All inductees are ultimately represented in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. Through approaches as creative and diverse as the music itself, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum tells the story of rock music with its exhibits, education programs and Library and Archives.

Presenters and performers at the induction will be announced at a later date. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be broadcast on Fuse; more information can be found at fuse.tv.
Courtesy: rockhall.com