NEW YORK – Kiss, thumbing their noses at critics who disdained them, entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Thursday in a class that included Nirvana, Peter Gabriel, Hall & Oates, Cat Stevens, Linda Ronstadt and Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.
The original four members of Kiss didn’t perform at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center due to a dispute between active original members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley and retired members Peter Criss and Ace Frehley. But the original four made peace and saluted each other in heartfelt induction speeches.
Linda Ronstadt, the sexy siren of the Los Angeles country-rock scene of the 1970s, suffers from Parkinson’s disease and couldn’t make it to her induction. Glenn Frey, who played with fellow future Eagle Don Henley in Ronstadt’s backup band, saluted her, saying, From that first rehearsal, I felt we were working on a style of music that had never been heard before.
Cat Stevens, the 1970s-era singer of Morning Has Broken and Wild World, was inducted by Art Garfunkel, who said his breakup with Paul Simon helped pave the way for Stevens’ entry into the charts.
Gabriel was inducted by Coldplay’s Chris Martin, who later sang with him on Gabriel’s Washing of the Water.
Dream big, and let your imagination guide you, even if you end up dressing as a flower or a sexually transmitted disease, said Gabriel, known for his theatrical outfits during early Genesis days.
Nirvana was being inducted in its first year of eligibility. The trio’s Smells Like Teen Spirit hit like a thunderclap after its 1991 release, briefly making the Pacific Northwest rock’s hottest scene before the band ended abruptly with singer Kurt Cobain’s suicide in 1994.
The Philadelphia-bred duo of Daryl Hall and John Oates is known for a string of blue-eyed soul hits including Sara Smile, Rich Girl, Private Eyes and Maneater.