Rush was given the brush-off by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame again yesterday, exasperating fans who have been petitioning for the Canadian rock giants' inclusion for six years. Yesterday, the Cleveland-based institution announced the induction of Black Sabbath, Blondie, The Sex Pistols, Lynyrd Skynyrd and even jazzman Miles Davis, but Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart once again felt the caress of steel as the Hall of Fame's door slammed in their faces.
Since Rush became eligible for induction in 1999, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has repeatedly denied the band that wrote the classic rock megahit Tom Sawyer even a nomination. In response, Rush-heads have created at least two online petitions and numerous Web sites pleading their case -- but they are getting tired of the constant rejection.
"2006 inductees include Skynrd [sic] and The Sex Pistols??" Illinois fan Mike Beard wrote on one petition yesterday. "It is getting to the point where I do not care if [Rush] gets in or not. With all of the mediocre artists in the HOF, it just doesn't seem like the induction is as prestigious as it once was!!!"
As of yesterday, the Rush Hall of Fame Campaign Petition at www.petitiononline.com had collected 21,936 e-signatures. According to the petition's writer, one Suzanne Bonney, Rush is worthy because:
- With 22 consecutive gold records, they are fourth behind The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Kiss in all-time gold record acquisitions for a band;
- They inspired such bands as Metallica, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, The Tragically Hip, Smashing Pumpkins, Primus and Queensryche; and
- "Rush consists entirely of men your children can look up to. No scandals, no embarrassing National Enquirer moments, nothing like that. Just really good music from generally decent human beings."
Other Rush fans, however, embrace the band's status as perennial hall of fame bridesmaids. "Actually, I think the lack of respect Rush has received for 30 years makes them that more endearing," wrote Andrew Tuttle, petitioner number 21,933 from Tualatin, Ore. "[P]erhaps it's a disgrace if they are ever inducted into the RRHF."
Still, some like petitioner Mark Stulz will keep fighting -- even if it takes until 2112. "It must be done for music's sake," Stulz wrote.