Ralph Bass

  • Year:
  • Inducted by:
    Seymour Stein
  • Category:
    Ahmet Ertegun Award
Ralph Bass


An eye for talent and an ear for hits.

The list of people Ralph Bass worked with is a roster of R&B greats: Etta James, Sam Cooke, James Brown and on and on. He changed popular music forever and for the better.

Hall of Fame Essay


Harry Weinger

Ralph Bass was a co-creator of some of the indisputable landmarks of rock & roll: producer of and/or witness to “Call It Stormy Monday” (T-Bone Walker), “Sixty-Minute Man” (the Dominoes), “Sleep” (Earl Bostic), “Work With Me, Annie” (Hank Ballard & the Midnighters), “Please Please Please” (James Brown), and so many more.

His life spans five decades of music and stints with such pioneering indie labels as Black & White, Savoy, King, and Chess.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Program Cover 1991
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Photography: Kevin Mazur, WireImage