The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced its 2024 induction class, which means rock fans all over the world are spending the day debating the most surprising inclusions and omissions.

This year's class of performing artist inductees includes Ozzy Osbourne, Foreigner, Peter Frampton, Cher, the Dave Matthews Band, Mary J. Blige, A Tribe Called Quest and Kool & the Gang. Alexis Korner, John Mayall and Big Mama Thorton were chosen as recipients of the Musical Influence Award, while Jimmy Buffett, MC5, Dionne Warwick and Norman Whitfield were selected for the Musical Excellence Award.

We asked five of our writers to praise and critique this year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame class, and here's what they said:

1) Who is the most surprising inductee?

Michael Gallucci: Mary J. Blige has made some good records over the years, but she's also made some forgettable ones. And she's always been more of an artist who draws from her influences rather than an influence on others. More than any of the other artists this year, she's the one whose credentials are the thinnest.

Corey Irwin: MC5. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy they got in – I just believed it was never going to happen. Six previous nominations got them nowhere. And while there was a small, vocal contingent still arguing in the band’s favor, it felt like the Hall had basically moved on from MC5. Now, out of nowhere, they’re in (albeit, via the “musical excellence” award). Happy for them, but I’m definitely surprised.

Matt Wardlaw: Honestly, I’m not surprised by any of it. You’ve got a number of bands and artists on this list (MC5, Big Mama Thornton, John Mayall) that have had advocates working on their behalf for years. For the rest of the inductees, you can kind of connect the dots for each one as to why they’re being inducted. There’s a certain template to the whole induction process and you see that on display with this year’s class.

Allison Rapp: This might sound weird, but for me it’s Cher. Don’t get me wrong, I think she deserves the place in the Hall, but not only was it her first time being on the ballot, she also has very strongly denounced her nomination in public. That’s not to say that the Rock Hall was invalid in including her — plenty of artists have criticized the Hall and gotten in anyway – but I did think they might pump the brakes on that one for another year or two.

Bryan Rolli: I didn’t expect Dave Matthews Band to make the cut this year, especially ahead of critical darlings like Jane’s Addiction and Sinead O’Connor. I’m not saying they lack Rock Hall bonafides, but I had hoped for at least one more year to prepare myself emotionally and spiritually for their induction.

2) Who is the most surprising exclusion?

Gallucci: Eric B. & Rakim are hip-hop pioneers whose influence is still being heard today. But seeing how the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame indicts just one rap artist each year, it was between them and A Tribe Called Quest, and Tribe are the more deserving artists. Still, if the Rock Hall can make room for more than one artist in other genres, there's no reason to limit that number to hip-hop.

Irwin: I’m genuinely shocked that Mariah Carey didn’t get the call. I’m not personally a fan, but her commercial success and continued popularity are hard to ignore. She’s scored more Grammy nominations than Whitney Houston or Madonna, and her career album sales are right in line with those two as well. Whitney and Madonna both got into the Hall easily, so I was surprised Mariah wasn’t given similar treatment.

Wardlaw: I hoped that Oasis would be on the final list. Even if they don’t care, they’re a band that continue to innovate, both collectively with their catalog of work -- and individually as Noel and Liam Gallagher add chapters to their own solo work. Similarly, I’d hoped that Jane’s Addiction would get in. I see a lot of parallels with both bands in terms of what they contributed to the musical landscape.

Rapp: I honestly thought Sinead O’Connor had a really good shot this year of making it in. Given her unexpected passing last summer, I had thought that the conversations surrounding her importance around that time might help propel her into the Rock Hall this year, but maybe next time.

Rolli: Oasis. With their debut album turning 30 this year, they epitomize the “new school” of classic rock. They’ve got a treasure trove of hits, sold millions of albums and have been gone long enough that even casual observers look back at the Gallagher brothers’ notoriously contentious relationship with fondness and amusement. Also, Sinead O’Connor — a fierce anti-establishmentarian whose body of work has only grown in estimation over the years, she seemed like a shoo-in, especially following her death last July.

3) Who are you most glad to see get in?

Gallucci: It's about time MC5 got in, even if it is through the back door via the Musical Excellence Award. They've been eligible forever and have been nominated and overlooked many times. It appears the Rock & Rock Hall of Fame will use the Music Excellence Award for artists who should be in but have somehow fallen through the cracks over the years. I'm all for that.

Irwin: Peter Frampton. I’m a fan of his music, but I’m an even bigger fan of the man. He’s just so damn likable. Friendly, good to his fans, humble, appreciative of his success – the list of his positive qualities is almost as long as his discography. He’s even managed to stay cheery while dealing with a serious inflammatory muscular disease. It’s impossible not to root for the guy.

Wardlaw: Peter Frampton. Though his time in the spotlight was relatively short following Frampton Comes Alive, he’s never stopped making albums and playing concerts that will leave your jaw on the floor. The world got to see a bit of that at last year’s Rock Hall inductions when he performed with Sheryl Crow and Stevie Nicks. The love and enthusiasm that Peter still has for his craft is infectious. Peter’s induction nod is long overdue and well-deserved.

Rapp: Peter Frampton! His inclusion is long overdue. For one thing, you simply can’t tell the story of rock ’n’ roll as a live art form without talking about Frampton. But also, he’s been the picture of resilience the last several years, battling a disease that’s required him to rethink his guitar playing and connect with his audience in new ways — now that’s rock ’n’ roll.

Rolli: Ozzy Osbourne. He’s the godfather of heavy metal, and his first two solo albums helped shape the sound of ‘80s rock nearly as much as Black Sabbath influenced the previous decade. Better late than never — at least the Rock Hall did right by the Prince of Darkness before he reached his 20th year of solo eligibility.

4) Four of the eight “performer” inductees (Foreigner, Cher, Kool & the Gang and Peter Frampton) got elected in their first year on the ballot. This isn’t new. Last year, four of seven inductees were first-timers, the year before it was five of seven. What does this overall trend mean for the Hall?

Gallucci: They're running out of artists to induct, so they're calling up lesser artists who have been ignored for so many years and probably wouldn't have been considered if the competition was tougher. We're probably going to see more of this as the playing field narrows.

Irwin: This trend seems to prove that an act’s best shot at induction comes their first year on the ballot. After that, support generally wanes, rather than increases. This is bad news for longtime holdouts who have previously been nominated multiple times (I’m looking at you, New York Dolls, Soundgarden, Chic, etc). Newbies have the momentum while returning names get greeted with “Oh, you again?”

Wardlaw: I think maybe part of it has to do with how long some of these artists have been waiting for consideration. The momentum seems to build in the background each year that they’re not on the ballot -- and makes it an easy win if and when they finally do make it onto the list.

Rapp: I mean, I suppose this is a good thing overall. If nothing else it bodes well for overlooked artists, but I’m not sure it matters much beyond that.

Rolli: I think it’s twofold. On one hand, the Rock Hall could be scavenging for second- and third-tier artists now that it’s inducted so many titans. But there’s nothing second-class about the first-time nominees who got inducted this year. I think it’s equally likely that the Rock Hall is revisiting its list of snubbed artists and making some long-overdue corrections. Maybe Jann Wenner’s unceremonious ouster from the Rock Hall board of directors last year has something to do with it? Lou Gramm would surely say so.

5) What are your overall thoughts on the 2024 class?

Gallucci: The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame needs to limit the number of inductions each year to no more than five artists. When they almost double that number (and they've more than doubled it if you consider the Musical Influence and Excellence award winners), the result is an overwhelming set of mostly underwhelming artists.

Irwin: Solid but unspectacular. I’m very happy for Frampton, Foreigner and Ozzy. It’s fun to see Kool & the Gang there as well, and I can already envision some appropriately funky collaborations during their performance. A Tribe Called Quest is cool, but Mary J. Blige, Cher and Dave Matthews Band don’t really move the needle for me. I would have loved to see Jane’s Addiction get in, but apparently that’s asking too much.

Wardlaw: Even with the omissions, it’s a great list, I think. Fingers crossed that Cher will show up. It’s also nice to see Jimmy Buffett included here and it will be interesting to see how they honor his legacy -- and who will be on the stage to play his music. On the surface, it feels like a very mainstream list, but there’s a lot of “deeper cuts” in the Musical Influence and Musical Excellence categories that will make for a fun night. But let’s be honest, it’s going to be a long night with all of these names, isn’t it?

Rapp: I’m pretty pleased! Admittedly, I was holding out some hope for Oasis, but something tells me they’ll get another chance in the near future. But overall I’m glad to see people like Frampton, Dionne Warwick and MC5 earn the recognition they deserve.

Rolli: Despite a few misgivings, I think the Hall did a good job with a fairly uninspiring group of nominees. While I’m all for a more genre-agnostic Rock Hall, I still think genuine, platinum-selling classic rock stars deserve priority, so I’m thrilled to see Osbourne, Frampton and Foreigner all make it in this year. They’re all getting up there in age, and they’ve been plagued by various health issues over the past several years, so it stood to reason that the Hall would throw at least one of them a bone. That all three got inducted this year suggests that maybe the Rock Hall board members and voters are finally ditching old prejudices and coming to their senses. Dare I hold out hope for Iron Maiden’s induction next year?

145 Artists Not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Many have shared their thoughts on possible induction.

Gallery Credit: Ultimate Classic Rock Staff

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