NEW YORK – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced this year’s nominees on Thursday, including hip-hop pioneers Public Enemy, the late Donna Summer and rock bands Deep Purple and Rush, and it said the public for the first time would be able to vote on who should be inducted.
Music fans will have until Dec. 5 to vote and their ballots for the top five artists will be combined with those from a committee of music experts to decide which artists will be inducted into the Hall of Fame at an April 18 ceremony in Los Angeles.
In the past, that decision has been taken solely by a Hall of Fame committee of some 600 artists, historians and members of the music industry.
Hopefuls on this year’s list include Heart, N.W.A, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Randy Newman, Albert King, The Marvelettes, The Meters, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Procol Harum, Chic and influential German electronic music group Kraftwerk.
Others got their nods after death, including Deep Purple co-founder and keyboardist Jon Lord, who died in July aged 71. British heavy metal rockers Deep Purple released 18 studio albums over their career spanning six decades.
Disco queen Summer also died earlier this year from cancer at age 63. The sultry-voiced singer won five Grammy awards and sold more than 130 million records worldwide.
While some of nominees, such as Jett and California hip hop group N.W.A., have stayed under the radar in recent years, others such as rockers Rush and Public Enemy, are still going strong, releasing albums this year and performing live.
American hard rock band Heart’s new album “Fanatic” was released this week. Singer Randy Newman, 68, has forged a successful career writing film scores, most recently for 2010′s “Toy Story 3″ and for the upcoming 2013 Disney Pixar animation “Monsters University.”
To be eligible for nomination, a band must have released its first single or album at least 25 years before the year of nomination. This year, that meant the band’s first recording was no later than 1987.
Music fans can cast their vote starting on Thursday at websites rockhall.com, hbo.com, CNN.com and rollingstone.com.
The April induction ceremony will be broadcast on cable TV channel HBO later in 2013.