The ad hoc combo “kicked things off with a ragged-but-right rendition of ‘Mr. Brownstone.’ Original drummer Adler took over for the next two songs, ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ and ‘Paradise City,’ reports Ultimate Classic Rock.
Slash’s current bandmate Myles Kennedy handled vocal duties with help from Green Day‘s Billy Joe Armstrong on the first number. Green Day inducted GN’R during the star-studded event which also saw presentations from John Mellencamp, E Street Band guitarist Steven Van Zandt, ZZ Top, Public Enemy’s Chuck D and others.
Kennedy filled in as well as possible in the absence of Axl Rose, the only original member of Guns N’ Roses who is still performing under that name. Rose, infamously, chose not to attend the festivities, having send a blabby open letter (via the L.A. Times) to the RRHOF organizers earlier this week explaining his decision not to attend the event and requesting not to be inducted in absentia, a request he was denied.
Some highlights, as reported by Rolling Stone:
*Axl Rose was not missed but served as the butt of many jokes. Comedian presenter Chris Rock remarked, during at speech 12:30 am, “A lot of people are upset that Axl didn't come tonight," he said. "But let's face it. Even if he was coming tonight, he wouldn't be here by now.”
*The evening closed with an all-star jam featuring Red Hot Chili Peppers plus Slash, Ron Wood, Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong, Kenney Jones and audience member George Clinton covering Stevie Wonder's "Higher Ground."
*The evening kicked off with a surprise performance by Green Day, who did a bombastic rendition of the American Idiot deep cut "Letterbomb."
*The Beastie Boys, unable to perform because member Adam Yauch is still recovering from cancer, instead were saluted by the Roots with Kid Rock and Travie McCoy of Gym Class Heroes for a medley of Beastie classics.
Original GN’R guitarist Izzy Stradlin also opted out of the fray (and do you even recognize him in this picture??) but said thanks in a gracious statement. Current keyboardist Dizzy Reed skipped as well.
Also MIA last night was Rod Stewart who was being inducted for his work along with The Faces. Stewart had earlier announced he would attend and perform with the band; yesterday however, he declined citing illness. Still, members of both The Faces and Small Faces, including Ron Wood – now guitarist with the Rolling Stones - showed, as did drummer Kenney Jones. Video of Wood and Jones discussing the honour is below.
Also inducted last night: Beastie Boys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Donovan and Laura Nyro. The ceremonies will be presented on TV via an upcoming HBO special. Meantime, stay tuned for more reports from the ceremonies!
Travie McCoy, Black Thought and Kid Rock perform Beastie Boys songs onstage during the 27th Annual Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Public Hall on April 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio, courtesy Getty Images.
Inductee Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers speaks onstage during the 27th Annual Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Public Hall on April 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio, courtesy Getty Images.