"The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is an utter and complete load of bollocks," Iron Maiden's characteristically blunt Bruce Dickinson stated late last year when his spoken word tour swung through Melbourne, Australia. "It's run by a bunch of sanctimonious bloody Americans who wouldn't know rock & roll if it hit them in the face," he continued. "They need to stop taking Prozac and start drinking fucking beer."
Maybe those "sanctimonious bloody Americans" finally did put down the Prozac for a second and pound a few beers because the nominees for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's class of 2020 are in and they're way harder hitting than the usual collection of soft rockers and pop stars. Indeed, Judas Priest, Motörhead, Nine Inch Nails, Soudgarden, MC5, T. Rex and Thin Lizzy are among the nominees, who also include Notorious B.I.G., Whitney Houston, Pat Benatar, Dave Matthews Bands, Depech Mode, the Doobie Brothers, Kraftwerk, Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan and Todd Rundgren. To be eligible for this year's ballot, each nominee's first single or album had to be released in 1994 or earlier — meaning Motörhead, for instance, have been eligible, and overlooked, for many, many years already. (Priest were nominated for the first time in 2018, but didn't make the final cut.)
A voter pool of more than 1,000 artists, historians, journalists and members of the music industry will select from among these nominees to determine the 2020 class. Fans will also have a chance to take part in the process by voting at RockHall.com or an interactive kiosk at the museum in Cleveland. The 2020 class will be announced in January and inducted May 2nd, 2020 at a ceremony at Cleveland's Public Hall.
Notably not nominated: Iron Maiden. So, while this year's nominees may be stronger than in the recent past, Dickinson's point still stands.