10 Snubbed Artists Who Need to Be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

King Diamond Photo by Miikka Skaffari/Redferns (via Getty Images) / H.R. Photo by Matt Cowan/Getty Images / Max Cavalera Photo by Medios y Media/Getty Images
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Throughout the years, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has recognized many talented artists and bands; that said, there have also been many acts that have been wrongly snubbed or ignored by the institution.

While Judas Priest was recently recognized and awarded the “Musical Excellence Award,” they should have been officially inducted by now. But Priest is one of the several musical acts to have been done dirty by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And hell, the Rock Hall is just finally recognizing both Iron Maiden and Rage Against the Machine for their work.

Though there are many bands and artists that deserve to be acknowledged for their craft, there are 10 that stand out to us as the most egregious snubs from the Hall of Fame.

Dead Kennedys 

When it comes to bands instrumental in elevating the punk genre, you cannot deny the influence of Dead Kennedys

Having formed in 1978, the band eventually became one of the most vital acts in the genre. Offering cutting political lyricism and exhilarating aural assaults, Dead Kennedys would go on to release four studio albums (the last one being 1986’s Bedtime for Democracy). 

From pop-punk to hardcore, the influence of the Dead Kennedys can still be felt to this day, and for that, they deserve to be recognized by the Rock Hall.

John Coltrane 

Born in 1926, John Coltrane is one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time. 

Coltrane was an incredibly gifted saxophonist, as well as a bandleader and composer. He helped start free jazz and introduced a new level of exciting technicality and creativity to the genre. Coltrane also brought a spiritual edge to his music, specifically, using music to explore spiritual and philosophical concepts.

Much of rock, and metal for that matter, owe a lot to jazz; you can compare many tech death bands to Coltrane’s music and you will find some startling similarities. His brilliant innovation and technical finesse have not only had a lasting effect on jazz but across a variety of musical genres. Coltrane is one of the most talented musicians in history and someone who should be in the Rock Hall.

Charles Mingus  

Another brilliant jazz musician, Charles Mingus was a pianist, bassist, composer, and a bandleader. 

Working in both bebop and avant-garde jazz (as well as other styles), Mingus worked with a remarkable range of talented artists, such as Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, and Herbie Hancock (just to name a few). 

Along with his technical skills, he also had an eye for how to put together his bands, and masterfully went about utilizing musicians for their particular skills. And similar to John Coltrane, Mingus’ technical presentation would go on to not only shape jazz, but also rock and metal. As a remarkable innovator, Charles Mingus had a way of orchestrating intriguing compositions; he crafted music that one could sit back and vibe to, as well as tunes that might challenge the mind and provide deeper engagement.

Charles Mingus is not only one of the most captivating performers to ever grace the arts, but an absolute rock star.

Alice in Chains  

Alice in Chains is still going strong to this day, but they were an unstoppable cultural force in the ‘90s. 

Often lumped in with the grunge genre, Alice in Chains is so much more. During the time that the late Layne Staley was fronting the act, Alice in Chains wove together qualities of metal, rock, punk, and more. Among their works, 1992’s Dirt stands to this day as one of the most influential albums in heavy music. 

Their blending of style and approach to song/lyric writing cemented them as one of the greats, and to this day, the love for Alice in Chains is still strong.

Bad Brains

Having formed in 1976, Bad Brains is one of the most influential acts in all of hardcore and punk.

One could make an argument that they birthed hardcore in its entirety, for they were pioneers of the genre. The band’s 1982 self-titled debut still hits hard to this day. 

Few have successfully started genres as succinctly and perfectly as Bad Brains, and none have been able to match their intensity to this day. 

Wu-Tang Clan  

While Public Enemy and NWA have already been recognized by the Rock Hall, it is a crime that Wu-Tang Clan has not been given the same honor yet. 

Wu-Tang Clan’s power is thanks to its murderer’s row of members, from GZA’s intellect to RZA’s cinematic approach to production. In any genre Wu-Tang Clan’s storytelling chops are second to none, expressing both the thrill and danger they’ve experienced throughout their lives in ultra-catchy, timeless jams. Every song is a visceral ride and a showcase of the kinetic energy hip-hop offers.

When it comes to their drive and creative approach to storytelling, Wu-Tang Clan is pure rock and roll spirit. 

Charlie Parker

A saxophonist, bandleader, and composer, Charlie Parker is yet another jazz icon who is somehow not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

Parker was not only an incredible musician, but he also would end up being one of the key figures in developing bebop. During his time he cemented himself as one of the genre’s greatest, and to this day his work is beloved by millions around the world. 

Parker’s astounding innovation speaks to the spirit of rock – he is an artist that displayed so much drive and desire to subvert convention and create something new. While he created a plethora of music that is beautiful to listen to, he also created compositions that were rich with technical intrigue, providing an additional element of fascination for hardcore jazz lovers.

Parker’s craft is studied by many jazz and rock artists to this day, for he left a profound mark on music as a whole.


You could say that alongside Metallica, Mercyful Fate, and Slayer, Sepultura may easily be one of the most influential acts in metal history. 

Formed in 1984, Sepultura stormed into the pop culture landscape and offered a ferocious display of grooving, thrashing death metal. The band was at the forefront in delivering a new wave of aggressive metal, their material merging the sonic qualities of thrash and death metal, but providing technical and stylistic twists that imbued the material with even more creative depth. 

Without a doubt, many of today’s death metal, thrash, and hardcore bands owe much to Sepultura.

Mercyful Fate   

As one of the most influential bands in all of metal history, it is wild that Mercyful Fate has not been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

While King Diamond has gone on to have a super successful career, it is the early work of Mercyful Fate that would go on to inspire a plethora of black, death, and thrash metal bands. 

Without a doubt, Mercyful Fate was one of the biggest bands in ‘80s and ‘90s metal, and with a new album on the way, it would be the right move for the Rock Hall to recognize the band.


While they may be a bunch of maniacal space aliens looking to eviscerate the human race, GWAR does deserve to be recognized by the Rock Hall (maybe that might even save our asses). 

Though the band has written a plethora of awesome metal bangers, what really sets them apart is the performance work they’ve done. Few bands/artists come as close as GWAR in presenting such a captivating, thrilling, and immersive experience when it comes to live music. 

Sure, there are rock and metal bands that offer exciting atmospheres, but with GWAR you get acting, fight sequences, costumes, props, etc. When it comes to live musical performances, GWAR raised the bar for everybody.