My two cents: KISS and Deep Purple should be in before Hall & Oates and Linda Ronstadt. This is a Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, not a music Hall of Fame. I don't consider Hall & Oates or Linda Ronstadt rock & roll. Nirvana will get in because they changed the music scene completely. They basically ended the hair metal thing that was going on in the 80's.
To show their obvious favoritism towards critic's darlings such as Nirvana, I'm sure they'll be one of those artists that are inducted the very first year they're eligible. I agree that they deserve to be in there beyond a shadow of doubt but the Hall definitely overlooks what would seem to be obvious choices. I could name many more but Stevie Ray Vaughan should have been inducted in 2008 (the first year he was eligible) but here we are five years later and the man hasn't even been nominated. As for who goes in first, the Hall really doesn't work like that as far as putting one artist before another in regards to importance, it's completely at random. Hall & Oates were known more for r & b but I feel they're worthy of recognition because of their contributions to that genre, even though I'm not necessarily a fan. I'm sure plenty of rock n' roll artists were influenced by them just as they were by James Brown, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, etc., all of whom are r & b/soul artists who have already been inducted. I believe Linda Ronstadt also belongs in the Hall, she might not be an outright rocker in the mold of Janis Joplin, Joan Jett or Pat Benatar (the latter of which has never been nominated) but she definitely deserves it. Growing up, I heard her cover folk, country and rock tunes. In a sense, the Eagles owe their career to her as they initially rose to prominence as her back up band. Speaking of which, they are one of several artists that have covered rock, country, folk and bluegrass such as the Byrds that have been inducted into the Hall. She's also well known for covering tunes by everyone from Warren Zevon to Chuck Berry and for her close association (along with Bonnie Raitt) with Little Feat, another band that's known for a variety of styles of music from rock, country and blues to jazz. The sad thing is, I doubt she even would have been nominated this year if not for her public announcement that she's been suffering from Parkinson's.
I'm not nearly the Kiss fan at 51 that I was at 14 but they deserve to be inducted. Only thing is, Simmons and Stanley have taken every opportunity to bitch and gripe about not being inducted which doesn't bode well for them being inducted this year. There is also the Dave Marsh factor. He once told MTV, "Kiss is not a great band, Kiss was never a great band, Kiss never will be a great band, and I have done my share to keep them off the ballot." Marsh, a well renown music journalist (probably best known for championing Springsteen early on) plays a key role in the selection process for the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame. His attitude sort of reminds me of Amy Linden, another journalist who had a say in the selection process (I'm not sure if she still does or not); she once said she'd do everything in her power to keep the Grateful Dead from being inducted. We all know how well that worked out for her...
Dave Marsh is a moron. KISS is a rock & roll band. They put on a great rock & roll show. Maybe not the greatest musicians in the world but that isn't what made them famous. It's all about their live shows. Simmons and Stanley should do what RUSH did and just take the high road and say nothing. The RUSH fans clamored so loudly for their induction they simply were no longer able to be ignored. The same will likely happen with KISS. Marsh probably voted for Madonna to be in the R & R Hall Of Fame, and she is anything but a rock & roll artist, and IMO should not be in the R & R Hall Of Fame.
I agree with you on Madonna but when she was inducted it became readily apparent to me that they were going to start recognizing artists outside the realm of rock n' roll. I understand artists being inducted from r & b/soul, jazz, country, bluegrass, blues, etc. as all of those genres influenced rock n' roll but I can't think of a single rock n' roll artist that has ever cited Madonna as an influence. I think Kiss belongs not just because of their live shows but because of the undeniable influence they had on other artists in the 70's. I would imagine they'll get in eventually but it's important to remember that it took some bands like Skynyrd and Sabbath close to 10 years a piece before they were ever inducted. Why? I know Ozzy was quite vocal about his disdain for the Hall. Skynyrd never really had much to say about it (at least that I recall) but from my point of view, the Hall looks down their nose at certain bands. That's why Deep Purple and Yes (who has never been nominated before) aren't in yet even though should have been inducted the first year they were eligible. Deep Purple have been as influential as Zeppelin and Sabbath, and Yes is one of the pioneers of prog rock. Lots of these artists that are denied have gone on to become core artists of the Classic Rock radio format through no fault of their own yet the Hall treats them like the redheaded stepchildren of rock n' roll. Treating them that way has never made a lick of sense to me.