As indicated on the Rock Hall website, the 13 honorees are divided into four different categories, including Performer Category, Early Influence Award, Musical Excellence Award and Ahmet Ertegun Award.
Not only is JAY-Z being inducted under the Performer Category, LL COOL has finally earned his spot in the Musical Excellence category after being nominated six times over the years. The Rock The Bells legend celebrated the news with an Instagram post shortly after the inductees were unveiled.
“You can do anything you put your mind to,” he captioned a photo of the announcement. “Thank you.”
The 2021 Rock Hall class also includes Foo Fighters, The Go-Go’s, Todd Rundgren, Carole King and Tina Turner.
“This diverse class of talented inductees reflects the Hall’s ongoing commitment to honor artists whose music created the sound of youth culture,” John Sykes, chairman of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation said in a statement. “It will make for an unforgettable live celebration of music in October at this year’s Induction Ceremony in Cleveland.”
Former Def Jam Recordings executive Lyor Cohen, who worked with LL COOL J early on in his career, should be satisfied. In April, Cohen penned a Billboard op-ed shaming the Rock Hall for shutting LL COOL J out five times.
Although Cohen has been a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame board of directors for over 10 years, he explained he was unable to cast a single vote when it came to deciding what artists are enshrined in the hall.
“Normally that’s enough for me,” he wrote at the time. “This year is different. I’m writing not in my official capacity, but as someone who’s been down with Hip Hop since the Eighties. I thought it was important to make the case in public for one of this year’s nominees, my colleague LL COOL J, with whom I worked for years.
“Mr. James Smith has been eligible for induction since 2010 and he’s been nominated for inclusion six times. But he’s never been voted in. And I think that that failure speaks to the limitations of too many of the HOF’s voters.”
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony takes place will take place on October 30 in Cleveland, Ohio. They’re planned for the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, which offers increased space and flexibility and prioritizes health and safety. The ceremony will air on HBO and stream on HBO Max at a later date.