The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum


Tom Morello Says 100% of Music is Political

Thursday, May 19: 3:30 p.m.
Posted by Tom Morello

Tom Morello Rage Against the Machine Interview at Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Cleveland, Ohio

I'd say that 100 percent of music is political, that music either supports the status quo or challenges the status quo, so every artist is political. Now, Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez probably don't self-identify as political artists, but their music, while often very entertaining and loved by their fan bases, is the bread and circuses of our times. If you're not questioning authority, you're tacitly submitting to authority. That's not to say that I don't have a long list of booty-shaking jams on my iPod, and there's certainly a place for that, but I'm also conscious of the fact that in my own work, that what you say and what you do matters, that you are a historical agent, and that if you don't have your hands on the steering wheel, somebody else does.

See what happens when rock and politics collide in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's Louder Than Words exhibit, open May 20, 2016!


continue Categories: Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Exclusive Interviews, Event

Bono Tells Story of U2's "Bullet the Blue Sky"

Thursday, May 19: 3:25 p.m.
Posted by Bono

U2 lead singer Bono interview Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Cleveland, Ohio Louder Than Words

I always want to go and see things for myself. That's why I ended up during the famine in Ethiopia. That's why I ended up in central America during the problems there in El Salvador and even in Nicaragua. I just want to go, I just want to see for myself.

I see things that are very hard to explain. That words, perhaps if I was a better writer, maybe I could just write journalism. But I'm blessed because I'm part of the U2 group and they're really good. They have an ability to express inexpressible thoughts. When I explained to Edge what I've been through in El Salvador, he was able to – with a nod to Jimi Hendrix actually – try and put some of that fear and loathing into his guitar solo.

We strapped my feelings to the [U2] song "Bullet the Blue Sky." I've been there; it was an American movement that were… wonderful people who were offering solace to refugees from the war in El Salvador. I was with one of those groups visiting. It was just a few of us. We went out into the hills and maybe that ...


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Inductee, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Exclusive Interviews

Gloria Estefan Shares Why She Won't Perform in Cuba

Thursday, May 19: 11:55 a.m.
Posted by Gloria Estefan

Gloria Estefan interview Obama and Cuba Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Cleveland, Ohio Louder Than Words

You know what, 57 years is a long time. And if anything is gonna make life in whatever way better for the Cuban people, then it needs to happen. I happen to think that as long as that government is there, some things may change, but they are still taking repressive measures.

Even the day that President [Obama] landed in Cuba. The Ladies in White, which are these ladies that protest every Sunday very peacefully, walking silently with a flower were beaten and jailed. Gorki [Aguila], one of the top rap artist in Cuba now that is very vocal against the Cuban government but wont leave. He stays in Cuba to be there and to have his message come through. He was arrested that day. There were cameras on them. There were journalists covering it. It was kind of Castro's way of saying: "We don't care if you come here."

As you notice, Raúl Castro did not greet the President at the airport. He was greeted not even by the vice president, but by somebody in the diplomatic mission. [Castro] had very subtle ways of telling [Obama]. And then we saw, obviously, the op-ed that Fidel Castro ...


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Exclusive Interviews

David Byrne Thinks Music Has the Power to Unify

Thursday, May 19: 11:50 a.m.
Posted by David Byrne

Talking Heads David Byrne interview politics Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Cleveland, Ohio Louder Than Words

I don't know if music has the power to change people's minds as far as about political ideas, about issues, things like that. I do think it has the power to unify people who are maybe slightly undecided, maybe slightly feeling a certain way but haven't been able to articulate it. Music does a good job of articulating something and how something feels more than kind of an editorial. It's really good at explaining how it feels and people who haven't had those feelings articulated, that they feel a certain way about something, music will do that. And then they realize that there are other people that music helps do that, that feel the same way they do. So, it creates a kind of group with a kind of like mind. Which isn't really changing anybody's mind, but it's kind of bringing people with like minds together.

See what happens when rock and politics collide in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's Louder Than Words exhibit, open May 20, 2016!


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Inductee, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Exclusive Interviews

Celebrating the Intersection of Rock & Politics

Thursday, May 19: 5 a.m.

Louder than Words

Sponsored post
by Jim Holthouser, executive vice president, global brands, Hilton Worldwide 

By nature of their profession, rock and roll artists live their lives on the road. Throughout history, they have left their mark on cities and people around world, traveling across continents and cultures to perform their music. And their fans follow. 

While I am not exactly a rock star, I can relate to the passion these musicians feel. I am the executive vice president of global brands for Hilton Worldwide, and as a classically trained pianist, I know the power that music has to inspire, entertain and educate an audience. I incorporate music into presentations and speeches with my colleagues globally to connect with them on a more emotional level. This connection is a key component of the hospitality industry – and helps ensure that guests have a positive personal experience with our hotels when they stay with Hilton. 

With the opening of Hilton Cleveland Downtown just around the corner, there’s a lot of excitement about Cleveland within the walls of Hilton, but today I’m excited about another important opening: the Louder Than Words: Rock, Power and Politics exhibit here at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ...


continue Categories: Exhibit

Rock Hall POV: Director of Collections Jun Francisco

Tuesday, May 3: 2 p.m.
Posted by Ivan Sheehan

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Inductee ZZ Top Dusty Hill Cleveland

What does it take to preserve rock and roll history? Jun Francisco knows.

Since 1999, Francisco has been the Director of Collections Management at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.  Born half way around the globe in the Philippines, he grew up listening to rock and roll fed to him by a radio station called “the Rock of Manila." His role allows him to be a fan and an in-demand expert.

He received his MA in Museum Studies from the University of Arkansas in Little Rock and a BA in History from Missouri Southern State University. He has worked at museums in Arkansas, Missouri, Michigan, New York and Ohio, and has served on the Boards of the Association of Midwest Museums, Arkansas Museums Association and Michigan Museums Association. He is a past chair of the Asian Pacific Professional Interest Committee of the American Alliance of Museums. He also loves the Clash.

Having just managed collections for the Rock Hall's new 2016 Hall of Fame Inductee exhibit – including a trip to Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen's house – Francisco had a few minutes to tell us about his adventures.

As the Rock Hall's director of collections, what ...


continue Categories: Inductee, Exhibit, History of Rock and Roll, Rock's Greatest Guitar Players, Event, Hall of Fame, Exclusive Interviews

Your Family Values Are Destroying Rock & Roll

Thursday, April 28: 2:30 p.m.

Mr Rogers makes devil horns on children's TV Show

The Who continue to perform “My Generation” in their 2016 tour dates, even with that line about hoping to die before they get old. And with Mick Jagger becoming a great-grandfather in 2014, rock culture really is thumbing its nose at the idea of growing old gracefully.

So if grandpas these days can be rockers, maybe our associations of rock = rebelliousness = youth have collapsed altogether. Or perhaps we have actually become accustomed to the idea that “youth” is an attitude, not a chronological stage in the human life cycle. From that point of view, a rock & roll pose of “sticking it to the man” is available to anyone, even “the man” himself.

While the spirit of rock & roll lives on in lots of teen subcultures and inspires many new bands, it’s also true that kids who grow up rocking out alongside their parents think of this music as … well, old.

If you play Metallica to your baby in the cradle, he might grow up thinking of “Enter Sandman” as a nostalgic song that brings back sweet memories of bedtime.

The recent rise in child stars who rock out note-perfect versions of Van Halen guitar solos and Keith Moon drum ...


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Education, Event

The Genius of Michael Jackson

Monday, April 18: 11:05 a.m.
Posted by Steve Knopper

Michael Jackson Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Billie Jean album cover art

I was born just a hair too late for the Jackson 5, so the first time I listened to Michael Jackson was probably around 1974, when he and Roberta Flack sang that charming and funny duet "When We Grow Up" in the cartoonish kids' bedroom in "Free to Be . . . You and Me." I was in high school in the 80s, and watched MTV all the time, so "Beat It" and "Billie Jean" were inescapable. Regrettably, back then, I was kind of a classic rock snob, so I paid most attention to "We Are the World," because Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan were on it. In the early 90s, when I became a music writer, I made up for it and fell hard for Off the Wall and Thriller.

Then when my daughter, Rose, was 4 or 5, she fell in love with "Goin' Back to Indiana," and we had to listen to it 400 times a day. That eventually brought us to "Billie Jean," which we watched on YouTube together, over and over. It's just mesmerizing.

How does Michael make his body do those things? How does he get his leg so high? How does he look like he ...


continue Categories: Hall of Fame, Inductee, Library and Archives, Exhibit, Event
Page 1 of 85. next