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2002 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees Talking Heads

Talking Heads

  • Year:
  • Inducted by:
    Anthony Keidis (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
  • Category:

Hall of Fame Essay


Barbara O’Dair

IN 1975, in New York City, at the back of a narrow, dark room called the Lower Manhattan
Ocean Club, a triad of misfits tentatively took the stage. Their leader announced in a reed-thin voice, “The name of this band is Talking Heads,” and then they launched into a devastating set.

The bass was pumped by a moppet who stared from fretboard to stage front through doleful eyes and blond bangs. The drum kit was pounded by a tousle-haired boy in a rugby shirt, whose unflinching ear-to-ear grin could be spied just above the hi-hat.

Up front, the wiry singer pulsed in place. His guitar swung from his neck like a noose; his resemblance to Tony Perkins only added to the menace. The trio could have been dropped from an alien aircraft, or taken a hard left off the Yellow Brick Road. 

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Program Cover 2002
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2002 Inductees Talking Heads

They taught me that music could be inspired by visual arts.

Anthony Kiedis

Photography: Jeff Rusnak

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