Johnny Winter's absence from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a bloody outrage

Devoted Johnny Winter fans are still mourning the passing of the Texas guitar legend, who died last  Wednesday (July 16) at the age of 70. They’ve no doubt been playing the hell out of his vast array of awesome albums, or reminiscing about the times they saw him tear things up in concert.

But now that the shock and sadness surrounding Winter’s death is starting to fade a bit, it’s being replaced by feelings of outrage at the understanding that Johnny Winter has never been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He hasn’t even been nominated!

Can you freakin’ believe that?

It should come as no surprise, I suppose, since the Rock Hall is notorious for ignoring deserving artists who’ve been eligible for their hallowed hallways for decades.

Remember the furor regarding the Rock Hall’s denial of the almighty Rush, who didn’t get in until last year? And the way shock-rock pioneer Alice Cooper was "blackballed" (his words) for 15 years, even though his impact on rock and roll is undeniable.

Just this year the Hall had the audacity to leave Link Wray, the inventor of the raunchy riff, out in the cold, choosing instead the likes of pop-radio faves Hall & Oates and Cat Stevens.

Do they even know what the words “rock and roll” mean? Apparently not. In fact, I doubt any of the powers that be at the Rock Hall have even heard Johnny Winter passionately holler those three words before launching into his famous live version of “Johnny B. Goode”:

THAT is what the words “rock and roll” mean–to me, anyway. And I don’t think I’m alone in that assessment.

Johnny Winter has been eligible for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for over 20 years. What the hell are they waiting for? I realize that he’s not as well known as the Trio of Living Rock Guitar Heroes–Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, and Eric Clapton–but all three of them have already been inducted, at least twice.

It’s Johnny’s turn.

Maybe the Rock Hall would argue: “Well hell, Newt, we can’t induct everybody! There isn’t room!” If that’s the case, then here’s an idea. You know how KISS was whining for years about not being in the Hall, and then when it finally got in this year, it continued complaining? I say toss ‘em out and make room for Winter. He’s got more talent in his left baby-toenail than Gene Simmons has in his entire tongue!

Or better yet: give the boot to Rock Hall director Jann Wenner, who got himself inducted for “Lifetime Achievement” back in 2004. Am I supposed to believe that his “achievements” in rock and roll are more worthy than Johnny Winter’s?

Fuck that noise.

I hereby demand the immediate nomination of John Dawson Winter III for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, class of 2015.

Who’s with me?

Comments (48) Add New Comment
I'm with you for one. I spent lots of time learning his exciting version of Rock and Roll Hootchie Koo. Yeah, it would have been nice to see Jann Wnner trying to out-jam JW.
Rating: +17
jeff brisson
i totally agree johnny should've been inducted decades ago; so FUCK the rock-n-roll hall of shame; i meant fame...
Rating: +13
Gin Toth
Agree 1000%. Sad beyond words. As bad as Rolling Stone Magazine saying he was one of the top 100 guitar players. 64th I beieve. Are you kidding me?!? People that vote for this shit probably don't even know who he is or heard of him. Top 2 is more like it. Jimi or Johnny. Still mourning. Had the opportunity to meet him 3 times. Class act and a true gentleman. RIP my friend. You biggest Canadian fan.
Rating: +6
Martin Dunphy
The R&R HoF, in my opinion, should just be ignored. There will be no end to the ridiculous choices made and magnificent artists ignored, and all because it follows the same rules as white-bread "awards" programs like the People's Choice Awards: i.e., whatever sells the most gets the silverware.
There's too much money to be made from the branding and promotion, and you have to play by the rules.
Instead, it should be a mark of honour not to be inducted, and the greatest honour should be to never even be nominated.
Let's dump that sorry-assed "institution" into a REAL rock fans' Hall of Shame.
Rating: +11
I totally agree been listening to Johnny since I was 14 I'm 58 loved the man and his music first saw him in Vancouver with John Mayall 1971 or72 never stopped playing his music. Rock and roll hall of fame should be ashamed of themselves for overlooking Johnny all these years
Rating: +19
Stew MacCluggage
It is ridiculous that they haven't added Johnny into the Hall, he has done so much for rock and roll, the baby of the blues. He was the master of the slide and played fantastic for 40 years!!! He wasn't creating pop rock so the Hall hasn't paid attention. It's too bad because he wanted to be inducted so bad, and now they will probably vote him in now that he's gone. Too late!
Rating: +3
Rob LaBelle
I cannot agree more. Johnny Winter embodies the attitude, skill and material of Rock n' Roll. Not to forget the immensely important work he did with Muddy Waters and Sonny Terry. Winter was nothing short of brilliant, released a vast catalogue of first rate albums and performed with great fire even into his older years. Give Johnny his spot, he was a vital bridge between the Delta blues and rock. His music will remain timeless...
Rating: +7
jeff lacour
one of the best blues guitarist of all time. One of the best rock and roll guitarist of all time. So all that tells me about the rock n roll hall of fame is they pick n choose who they like not who realy deserves it!

Rating: -10
greg o
johnny winters was the greatest blues guitarist in history!Just amazing!Flav o flav in the rock and roll hall of fame!Give me a break. Hall of shame indeed!Peace to johnny.
Rating: -11
Absolutely with you on this
Rating: +4
The Rock and Roll "Hall of Fame" is just tourist trap garbage. Shame on them for not inducting Johnny when he was alive. We all know his enormous body of work and his electrifying live performances. Screw the "Hall of Fame"!
Rating: +3
Rob Lewis
Who cares about the Rock and roll Hall of Fame - what would they know? 64th? This man was the embodiment of the blues -the spirit of Muddy Waters and the Old Chicage bluesmen lived on in him. When I first heard him it send shivers down my spine and that feeling has never gone away. Rew and earthy, unbelievably slick, utterly original. Number 1 for me. Clapton had something to learn about integrity and staying true to your roots!
Rating: +21
He created something for ever.
Thank you Johnny.
Rating: -1
Rick R
The guy nailed it with Gene Simmons
Rating: -9
Leo Buholzer
what a shame all this RnR HoF stuff , but we will always know he was the baddest mo-fo outa Texas and his kinda rock and blues will outshine those in the HoF,,, We seen the end coming but still surprised , shocked ,,,Rest In Peace Johnny , we love ya and we will always play your blues .....see ya soon brother,,,
Rating: -8
64 th? you gotta be fucking kidding me. theres no way he got beeat out by 62 rock guitar players. at the very least he should be in the top 20! more like top 10.
Rating: -11
I feel fortunate that we got to see & hear Johnny in the 70's and again later on. Amazing both times, didn't miss a beat! Come on Rolling Stone! Johnny #63???? I agree with the above. Rock & Roll Hall of Fame? I just don't get it! Looking forward to hearing his new album in September tho. Was upset to hear of his passing. What a loss!!!
Rating: +1
kip zartman from boyertown pa
I.think he should be and they should do tribut on tv
Rating: +1
Barry Feldman
I agree with all of the above comments. JW has a place in RnR history. Screw the hall of fame.
Rating: -17
Andre Brown
I love Laura Nyro and Darlene Love.They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as is Donna Summer. Johnny Winter and Stevie Ray Vaughan are not.That is Unbelievable!
Rating: +2


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