Thursday, December 17, 2015, 7:42 AM
Rappers from N.W.A. (seated from left Ice Cube, Eazy-E and MC Ren) were snubbed in two prior chances to get into the Rock Hall of Fame.
The groundbreaking Los Angeles rap act N.W.A. will join a quartet of 1970s era FM radio rockers — Chicago, Cheap Trick, Deep Purple and Steve Miller — as 2016 inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
N.W.A., led by Dr. Dre and Ice Cube, was elected after three unsuccessful nominations — a win that may have been linked to the release of a “Straight Outta Compton,” a hit movie about their career. Their hard-core tales of life on the street on songs like “F—- tha Police” made them a provocative chart presence in the late 1980s and influenced an empire of other acts.
Both Miller and Cheap Trick made it during their first year on the ballots.
The induction ceremony for the Cleveland-based hall will be held April 8 at the Barclays Center.
Guitarist Miller came out of the San Francisco rock scene and became a dependable maker of pop hits like “Take the Money and Run,” “Fly Like an Eagle,” “Jet Airliner” and “Jungle Love.”
Midwestern favorites Cheap Trick succeeded with a highly amped version of Beatles-influenced melodies on hits “Surrender” and “Dream Police.” The band’s “Live at Budokan” album is one of rock’s best-known live sets. Guitarist Rick Nielsen and rumpled drummer Bun E. Carlos gave them an indelible live presence.
Deep Purple, seen here in 1971, created rock’s ultimate riff in the opening of “Smoke on the Water.”
The guitar riff for Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” remains one of the most recognizable in rock history. Guitarist Ritchie Blackmore was a stalwart in a hard rock act that competed with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath for the loyalty of metalheads.
Before they shortened their name from the Chicago Transit Authority, Chicago was known for its jazz-rock fusion. Behind the vocals of Peter Cetera, it had a string of pop hits including “Saturday in the Park,” “25 or 6 to 4,” “If You Leave Me Now” and “Does Anyone Really Know What Time it Is?”
The influential disco-era band Chic is becoming the Susan Lucci of music, failing to win induction in its 10th year as a nominee. Janet Jackson, The Cars, Los Lobos and Yes were among the other nominees rejected.