The discussion of the Pittsburgh Rock 'N Roll Legends nominees hasn't calmed down, so it's worth revisiting another aspect of it: Trying to induct people while they're still alive!
Because we got a late start with this in Pittsburgh, at the rate of three inductees per year (one Modern Legend, one Legacy Legend, one Non-Music Professional), they'll be lucky to get through the '70s by 2035.
As it is now, we're choosing between Donnie Iris, Joe Grushecky and Billy Price (along with Rusted Root) as Modern Legends. Ideally, those first two or three would get in now and we could quickly move on to the likes of Norman Nardini and Frank Czuri and someday maybe get to the rival punks: Carsickness, The Five, Cynics, etc.
At this rate, Czuri (of Diamond Reo, Silencers, Igniters) could be five years away because in the Legacy category, the Awards group -- created as a cancer charity by Mary Ann Miller Communications -- has nominated '50s/'60s acts the Skyliners, Del Vikings and Lou Christie and will still have to contend with the likes of the Marcels, the Vogues, the Jaggerz, etc.
Those people aren't getting any younger. In terms of non-professionals, when do we get to Dom DiSilvio? Johnny Banana? Manny Theiner?
So, why only induct three at a time?
Theresa Kaufman, an event planner also involved in the Awards program, said "First, honestly, it would diminish the focus on the honoree. Second, if we honor two from each category, then it becomes an issue of why not honor three or four? Where do you draw the line?"
Well, the beauty of these things is you can draw the line anywhere you want. If you drew it at two per category, for a total of 6, Donnie and Joe (or better yet, the Iron City Houserockers), for instance, could get their plaque together on April 23 at the Hard Rock Cafe and you would give them the exit music after 5 or 10 minutes.
So, basically, this will be a long, slow (and potentially sad process) and they need to hit the accelerator.
Finally, people have wondered "who cares" and "who are these people are to come in and start their own 'hall of fame.'?"
Excellent point! The founders are from the society gala SEEN not the rock scene. And the Pittsburgh Rock N Roll Legends Awards has been created as a black-tie-type affair for the purpose of benefiting the Cancer Caring Center, with tickets ranging $150 to $200.
So, with apologies to Huey Lewis, its heart is not rock 'n' roll.
However, it's been legitimized, because last year the Pittsburgh Rock n Roll All-Stars (Iris, Grushecky, the Granatis, etc.) showed up and took part in the induction of Rich Engler. Until someone else comes along to do this -- The Heinz History Center? WDVE? The PG? City Paper? -- this is Pittsburgh's music hall of fame.