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The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame maintains an official YouTube channel, which I didn’t know until today. It’s great to watch the speeches introducing the inductees — Pete Townshend basically roasted The Rolling Stones, for example; Anthony Kiedis gave a heartfelt, unironic, and touching testimony to Talking Heads; and Springsteen on CCR is not to be missed.

Unfortunately, the inductees’ own speeches are far less interesting. Just lots of shout-outs to behind-the-scenes power players that all the other rock stars in the physical audience are obliged to enthusiastically applaud but few in the real world have heard of. Even Patti Smith spends most of her time sucking up to Clive Davis, as though she were just another American Idol winner. Maybe she was, in a way. Maybe she was.

The 2013 nominees are a mixed bag, as usual — and that’s a good thing. Heart! Yay! Kraftwerk! Yay! Joan Jett — eh? I thought of her as a one-hit wonder. Maybe two hits. But what do I know? I know nothing!

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