2016 Inductees Exhibit

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to Open 2016 Inductee Exhibit April 6

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to Open 2016 Inductee Exhibit April 6

CLEVELAND (April 4, 2015) – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame will unveil a new exhibit on April 6 highlighting the 2016 Inductees: Cheap Trick, Chicago, Deep Purple, N.W.A, Steve Miller, and Ahmet Ertegun Award for Lifetime Achievement recipient Bert Berns.

Opening weekend festivities at the Rock Hall will include an Official Simulcast Party for the 2016 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on April 8 and an interactive discussion about the Class of 2016 on April 7 through April 9. An expert team of educators and curators will share rarely heard stories and hold in-depth discussions about this year’s Inductees. Local residents (with a valid ID showing zip codes beginning with 440, 441, 442, and 443) can take advantage of a special two tickets for $20 offer at the Box Office April 6 through April 22.

The exhibit will highlight this year’s class and their impact on music history through the many iconic items that span the careers of these legends. Some of the stories and items featured in the exhibit include: 

Cheap Trick

Godfathers of power pop, Cheap Trick connected 60s pop, heavy metal, and punk while providing the blueprint for arena rock. 

Influences heard in Cheap Trick’s sound include The Beatles (Inducted 1988), The Ventures (Inducted 2008), and Jeff Beck (Inducted 1992, 2009) and their legacy lives on in the sound of bands such as Guns N’ Roses (Inducted 2012), The Smashing Pumpkins, and Weezer. 

One of the many Cheap Trick items featured in the exhibit is Rick Nielsen’s 1981 Hamer Custom guitar, which was created by sanding down and laminating five guitar bodies. Before this, he would wear five different guitars at once during solos.

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include The Beatles, Jeff Beck guitar in Cities and Sounds: London case, Guns N’ Roses in the Legends of Rock exhibit and Never Give Up: Alternative Press Magazine at 30 exhibit. Other unique guitars on display in the Museum include John Paul Jones custom alembic bass and ZZ Top guitars (and drums) in the Legends of Rock exhibit.


With over 21 Top 10 singles, five consecutive Number One albums, 11 Number One singles, fans that stretch across the globe and countless bands that have followed in their wake, Chicago’s legacy is unquestionable. 

Influences in their sound reflect The Benny Goodman Orchestra, Jimi Hendrix Experience (Inducted 1992), and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band (Inducted 2015) and their legacy lives on with artists such as Journey, Toto, and Sufjan Stevens. 

Included in the exhibit, visitors will experience Chicago through items such as “Saturday in the Park” lyrics handwritten by Robert Lamm in 1972. The song reached Number Three, becoming Chicago’s highest charting single to date and is often a featured song during Saturday baseball games at Chicago’s Wrigley Field.

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include Legends of Rock, lyrics “From the Collection of Library & Archives” on level three, Jimi Hendrix, and Doc Pomus’ “Save the Last Dance for Me” lyrics in the Rave On case.

Deep Purple

Deep Purple joined the Guinness Book of World Records in 1972 as “The Globe’s Loudest Band.” They are a cornerstone of hard rock and the precursor to heavy metal. The opening riff to 1972’s “Smoke on the Water” is often cited as the greatest guitar riff of all-time.

The band had many lineup changes over the years and was influenced by a variety of artists including Cream, Vanilla Fudge, and Johann Sebastian Bach. Their legacy lives on with bands such as Iron Maiden, Aerosmith, and Queens of the Stone Age and their influence on the heavy metal community as a whole is widespread. 

While Ritchie Blackmore of Deep Purple was known for being more of a Stratocaster guy, in the exhibit visitors can see the 1961 Gibson ES-335 TDC he played on the first five Deep Purple albums, including 1967’s “Hush.” This featured guitar was one of Blackmore’s first electric guitars.

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include John Lennon bed-in guitar and his Rickenbacker in the Beatles exhibit, Muddy Waters 1958 Burgundy Telecaster, Duane Allman’s guitar in the Graham Nash: Touching the Flame exhibit, the Jimi Hendrix exhibit, Chuck Berry’s Gibson ES-335 in the Rave on exhibit, Metallica and Aerosmith artifacts in the Legends of Rock exhibit, and Iron Maiden, Rush, and Van Halen in the Cities and Sounds Heavy Metal case. 


N.W.A, arguably one of the most controversial and complicated voices of their generation, was the first gansta rap group to achieve mainstream success with Straight Outta Compton (1988). Basing their sound on Ice-T and Schooly D, their early records featured the production work of DJ Yella and Dr. Dre, whose style evolved into a midtempo, synthesizer-based sound known as G-funk. 

N.W.A’s sound was influenced by bands such as Parliament-Funkadelic (Inducted 1997), Run DMC (Inducted 2009), and Zapp, and their legacy lives on with artists such as Eminem, Nicki Minaj, Kendrick Lamar, and others.

Included in the exhibit, alongside other N.W.A stories and items, is MC Ren of N.W.A’s jacket, c. 1991. MC Ren was signed to Ruthless Records in 1987, while still attending high school. 

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include Rappers Delight exhibit, Don’t Knock the Rock exhibit, FBI letter to Priority Records (Louder Than Words: Rock, Power and Politics, opening May 20), and the Legends of Rock exhibit.

Steve Miller

he 2016 Inductee learned jazz and pop techniques from Les Paul, a family friend and Steve Miller’s godfather. In his early years, he played with Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Buddy Guy and Paul Butterfield. He later fused his blues with psychedelia and released a stream of hits: “Take the Money and Run,” “Rock’n Me,” “Fly Like an Eagle,” “Jet Airliner” and “Jungle Love.” Years later, Miller emerged with a new band and sound with his hit “The Joker,” 1973. 

Miller was influenced by Les Paul (1988 Inductee), Chuck Berry (Inducted 1986), and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, among others, and his music resonates with musicians such as Phish, Keb’ Mo’ and Sheryl Crow. 

Among Miller’s items in the exhibit is his 1974 Fender Stratocaster from his personal collection. 

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include Jimi Hendrix’s Fender Stratocaster in his exhibit, Chuck Berry in the Rave On exhibit, and the Les Paul exhibit on level two.

Bert Berns

He produced 51 chart records in seven years, most of which he also wrote, including “Twist and Shout” (The Isley Brothers), “Hang On Sloopy” (The McCoys), “I Want Candy” (The Strangeloves), “Brown Eyed Girl” (Van Morrison), and more. 

Featured alongside other items, visitors can view handwritten lyrics by Janis Joplin of Berns’ “Cry Baby.” The song was originally recorded by R&B singer Garnet Mimms in 1963 but became a longtime staple of Joplin’s live shows. 

Additional exhibit connections visitors can enjoy include Legends of Rock, lyrics “From the Collection of Library & Archives” on level three, and Doc Pomus’ “Save the Last Dance for Me” lyrics in the Rave On case.

The 2016 Inductee exhibit will also include a video in the “For Those About to Rock” theater highlighting speeches and special moments from past Induction Ceremonies and will be updated with 2016’s Inductees after this year’s Induction Ceremony takes place. There is also a video wall outfitted with soundbars powered by Klipsch Audio that share interviews with the 2016 Inductees and behind-the-scenes footage from the Induction Ceremony and rehearsals. 

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2016 will be enshrined into the Hall of Fame this Friday, April 8. The Ceremony will be held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Tickets are available at ticketmaster.com. The Ceremony will air on HBO on Saturday, April 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

About the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame:

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s mission is to engage, teach and inspire through the power of rock and roll. The institution carries out its mission by giving voice to the stories of the people, artifacts and events that shaped rock and roll — through exhibits, materials in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s Library and Archives, traveling exhibitions, and a wide array of innovative educational programs and activities. The Rock Hall is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays (and Saturdays from Memorial Day through Labor Day), the Rock Hall is open until 9 p.m. For more information, please call 216.781.ROCK (7625), visit rockhall.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@rock_hall) and Instagram (@rockhall).


Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Media Contacts:

Shauna Wilson, 216-515-1215, [email protected] 

Carl Harp, 216-515-1503, [email protected]