11 women who should already be in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

The Go-Gos, (L-R) Belinda Carlisle (lead vocals), Kathy Valentine (bass), Charlotte Caffey (lead guitar), Gina Schock (drums), and Jane Wiedlin (rhythm guitar), playfully pose during a 1985 Hollywood, California, portrait session. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images) (1985 George Rose)

While the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is known for celebrating excellence in music history, it’s not know for celebrating musicians of a certain category: Women.

You might be thinking that we’re exaggerating, but just look at the numbers and you’ll see what we mean.

First of all, the sheer number of male acts that are inducted compared to women is massive.

Out of all the acts inducted, NPR found that just less than 8% of the inductees are women.

To makes matters worse, there are 22 men who have been inducted twice into the Hall of Fame, and in 2019, the very first woman, Stevie Nicks, was inducted twice -- first for being a member of Fleetwood Mac and then again for her solo career.

And the world isn’t lacking women who should be inducted twice -- or inducted at all.

We saw a little bit of progress this year with more women being on the nomination list.

Will it result in a larger class of women getting inducted this year? Only time will tell, but one can hope, right?

To be considered eligible for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, an artist must have his or her debut album out in the world for 25 years. So, with that being said, here is a list of women who should have already been inducted -- and some of them twice.


1. The Go-Go’s

Debut album: “Beauty and the Beat” (1981)

Already inducted: No

The new-wave legends finally made the nomination list for the Rock Hall, and it’s about time. Not only did the Go-Go’s write, record and perform their own songs, but they were the first all-female band to do that and have a No. 1 debut album.

The band had a really great documentary about them come out last year, and the end of the film makes a case for the Go-Go’s to the Rock Hall. Did that push them to making the nomination list? Maybe so, but it’s a nomination that is long overdue. Hopefully, they will be one of the groups inducted this year.

2. Tina Turner

Debut album: “Tina Turns The Country On!” (1974)

Already inducted: Yes

Tina Turner was first inducted to the Rock Hall as Ike and Tina Turner, getting inducted with Ike, her former bandmate and abusive husband. Tina overcame hardship, launched a stellar solo career in her 40s and became an even bigger icon and legend.

Sure, when you think of Tina Turner, you probably think of “Proud Mary,” but the fact that she’s not nominated as a solo artist, which is where some of her best songs came from, is shameful. Turner made this year’s nomination list, so it’d be great to see her get her due, once and for all.

3. Carole King

Debut album: “Writer” (1970)

Already inducted: Yes

You may not know this (or maybe you do), but before Carole King was singing hit songs at her piano, she was behind it -- writing hit songs for other artists. “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” by The Shirelles, “One Fine Day” by The Chiffons and “(You Make Me Feel) Like a Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin were all written by King, so it makes sense why she was inducted into the Rock Hall as a songwriter already.

But King’s solo career, especially including her entire second solo album, “Tapestry,” was highly influential on so many singer-songwriters making music today. Like The Go-Go’s and Tina Turner, King made the nomination list this year, too. It would be fantastic to see all three of these acts inducted later this year.

4. Diana Ross

Debut album: “Diana Ross” (1970)

Already inducted: Yes

Diana Ross is another case of a women being inducted in a band already, but she deserves another nomination for her solo career.

Ross’s influence goes on for generation to generation, and she has reinvented herself as a solo artist, time and time again. What Ross did with The Supremes is obviously iconic and legendary, but some of her solo songs, like “I’m Coming Out” and “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” are arguably more famous than any of her Supreme songs.

5. Dolly Parton

Debut album: “Hello, I’m Dolly” (1967)

Already inducted: No

It’s honestly a travesty that Dolly Parton isn’t in the Rock Hall yet. Granted, women in country music are barely represented in the Rock Hall, but there is only one Dolly! How can this be?

There are so many reasons why Parton should be in the Rock Hall already, but the fact that she helped fund vaccines to help end the COVID-19 pandemic should put her at the front of the line for next year.

6. Pat Benatar

Debut album: “In The Heat of Night” (1979)

Already inducted: No

There are probably some who would argue that some of the women on this list aren’t “rock and roll,” but you cannot deny Pat Benatar.

Nobody rocked the ‘80s like Benatar did, and since some of her contemporaries like Stevie Nicks have been inducted, she is due next.

7. Annie Lennox

Debut album: “Diva” (1992)

Already inducted: No

Annie Lennox is someone who should have easily been inducted twice. The fact that Eurythmics aren’t in the Rock Hall already is insane. Their influence goes far and wide -- and “Sweet Dreams” is the best song ever, right?

Lennox has also had an incredible solo career, and her voice is one of the most recognizable and powerful voices in history.

8. Carpenters

Debut album: “Ticket to Ride” (1969)

Already inducted: No

Speaking of recognizable voices in music history, can we give it up to Karen Carpenter?

So sweet, angelic and ethereal, she went on to inspire countless singers after her. The brother-sister duo made some of the best music of the ‘70s, but it would be wonderful to see Carpenter honored for her contribution to music, especially since she’s been gone for so long.

9. Mariah Carey

Debut album: “Mariah Carey” (1990)

Already inducted: No

This might be a controversial pick since so many people have such strong feelings about Mariah Carey, but we have to look at the stats. She has 19 No. 1 singles, the most of any solo artist, and has spent a record 84 weeks at the top of the Billboard 100 chart. The numbers, her voice and her songwriting speak for themselves. And honestly, if the Rock Hall is going to induct Madonna (an honor she most certainly deserves) or Whitney Houston (again, totally deserved), Carey should be next. Let the queen of Christmas into the Hall of Fame!

10. The B-52′s

Debut album: “The B-52′s” (1979)

Already inducted: No

It’s a shame that the world’s No. 1 party band isn’t in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

The B-52′s sounded like no other band with their debut album, featuring the always-cool hit “Rock Lobster.” The band has both men and women, but Cindy Wilson and Kate Pierson deserve their due. With hits like “Love Shack,” “Rome” and “Private Idaho,” these new-wave pioneers should be inducted soon.

11. Cher

Debut album: “All I Really Want to Do” (1965)

Already inducted: No

Cher has a Kennedy Center Honor (as does Dolly Parton), so, isn’t she in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame yet?

Not only should Cher be in as a solo artist, but it’s crazy that she’s not with Sonny Bono as Sonny and Cher, too. Cher should be in twice and there should be no further discussion.

Bonus: The Runaways

Debut album: “The Runaways” (1976)

Already inducted: Yes and no

Runaways guitarist Joan Jett was inducted a few years ago, so if the Runaways were inducted, she would have the honor of being in twice. But beyond that, the Runaways were an all-female band that played their own instruments before that was ever a thing.


This list could honestly go on and on, so here are some more women acts that deserve to be in the Rock Hall already, because it’s about time this becomes just a little bit more equal:

  • Barbara Streisand
  • Grace Jones
  • Kate Bush
  • Bjork
  • Cyndi Lauper
  • Hole
  • Carly Simon
  • Salt-N-Pepa
  • Sleater-Kinney
  • Tori Amos
  • Sheryl Crow
  • Alanis Morisette
  • Mary J. Blige
  • Chaka Khan
  • TLC
  • Selena

... And so many more. Please make this happen, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!


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