Staple Singers, Curtis Mayfield, Charles Brown Inducted Into Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.(Brief Article)
Issue: April 5, 1999
Black music legends The Staple Singers, Curtis Mayfield and Charles Brown became the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's newest inductees during its 14th annual induction ceremony at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City.
The famed soul group The Staple Singers was inducted by hip hop songstress Lauryn Hill. The group, who began as gospel singers, includes Roebuck "Pops" Staples, Mavis Staples, Cleotha Staples, Pervis Staples and Yvonne Staples. Pops Staples, the patriarch-leader and guitarist, accepted the award.
The group is known for the hit songs Respect Yourself, I'll Take You There and Let's Do It Again.
R&B music legend Curtis Mayfield was inducted by music mogul Sean "Puffy" Combs, who described Mayfield as a father of today's music.
Mayfield did not attend the ceremony due to illness, but he did give thanks via videotape. Mayfield's hits include Superfly and Freddy's Dead. Also a renowned producer, Mayfield scored the soundtracks Superfly, Claudine, A Piece of the Action and Short Eyes.
Wheelchair-bound after an accident at a 1990 concert that left him paralyzed from the neck down, this is Mayfield's second time as an inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Mayfield was inducted with his former group, The Impressions, in 1991.
Blues singer Charles Brown, who is credited as the originator of the West Coast "cool blues" sound of the 1940s, was honored as an early influence. He was posthumously inducted by singer Bonnie Raitt (JET, Feb. 22). Brown is known for the holiday blues classic Merry Christmas Baby.
He released the acclaimed comeback album All My Life in 1990. Raitt, who toured with Brown, called the occasion bittersweet because he died of congestive heart failure a few months shy of receiving the honor.
Blues legend Ray Charles inducted fellow piano man Billy Joel, who said he got his music from Charles, Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett.
Other performers inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame included Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Del Shannon and Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys. Shannon and Wills both were posthumously honored. Beatles producer George Martin was saluted in the non-performing category.
The names of Hall of Fame honorees are on permanent exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, which opened in 1995.
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