Ronstadt heads Rock
Hall of Fame’s new class

Last modified: Friday, February 07, 2014
Talk about mixed emotions: In the same year that Linda Ronstadt told the world she can no longer sing a note because of the Parkinson’s disease afflicting her, she has been elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, an organization about which she told the Los Angeles Times recently, “It’s not anything I’ve ever given a second thought to.”

Ronstadt, 67, is one of six new members who will be formally inducted next year, along with Peter Gabriel, KISS, Hall and Oates, Nirvana and Cat Stevens.

Acts that made the final ballot but did not make the cut for induction are Yes, N.W.A, Chic, the Meters, Deep Purple, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, LL Cool J, the Replacements, Link Wray and the Zombies.

Part of the reason Ronstadt never aspired to the Hall of Fame came out in “Simple Dreams,” her new “musical memoir,” in which she wrote that “I never thought of myself as a rock ‘n’ roll singer — I’ve thought of myself as a singer who sang rock ‘n’ roll, who sang this, who sang that.”

Gabriel is entering the hall a second time, having been inducted in 2010 as a member of prog-rock group Genesis.

The induction of Cat Stevens, who changed his name to Yusuf Islam and converted to Islam at the end of a streak of artistic and commercial success in the ’70s, won’t be without controversy because of remarks he made in 1989 that were interpreted as supportive of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s imposition of a death sentence on “The Satanic Verses” author Salman Rushdie. Yusuf Islam subsequently denied that he had advocated anyone killing Rushdie.