Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame CEO denies the Hall deliberately snubs metal: “We celebrate all forms of rock and roll”

The president and CEO of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, Greg Harris, has responded to claims that the Hall does not respect metal artists, following the news that 2021 nominees Iron Maiden and Rage Against The Machine won’t be inducted this year.

Harris was asked by Audacy Music about comments made by Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider, where he called the voting members “arrogant elitist assholes who look down on metal and other bands that sell millions because we’re not their definition of cool.”

Harris responded: “It’s an interesting one, because we do [respect metal artists]. We celebrate all forms of rock and roll. They were nominated, and we’ve nominated Maiden, Judas Priest have been nominated, we put Def Leppard in… Those that are nominated, over 80 per cent of them eventually do get inducted. So it’s really a question of, ‘let’s keep nominating them, let’s get them on the ballot, and let’s get it out to the voting body.’

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“Incredible bands, no doubt, truly worthy of nomination, truly worthy of consideration. This ballot had sixteen artists on it… and five would have been terrific. They just can’t all go in. So this year these are the six. And we’re excited to see what next year brings,” Harris concluded.

Dee Snider had initially encouraged fans to vote for Iron Maiden on the hall’s fan ballot. It was quickly pointed out that Iron Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson, in 2018, had heavily criticised the Hall. He first called it “an utter and complete load of bollocks,” adding that “it’s run by a bunch of sanctimonious bloody Americans who wouldn’t know rock ’n’ roll if it hit them in the face. They need to stop taking Prozac and start drinking fucking beer.”

He then clarified his statement, noting that his disdain was not because he was upset Iron Maiden had not been inducted, and that he would turn down an induction. Speaking to the Jerusalem Post, he said: “they took my statement out of context to make it seem like I was upset that we weren’t in the Hall of Fame. I’m really happy we’re not there and I would never want to be there. If we’re ever inducted, I will refuse. They won’t bloody be having my corpse in there.”

He added: “Rock and roll music does not belong in a mausoleum in Cleveland. It’s a living, breathing thing, and if you put it in a museum, then it’s dead. It’s worse than horrible, it’s vulgar.”

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