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Tupac, Chaka Khan, Janet Jackson Among Nominees for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Chaka Khan, Tupac and Janet Jackson (Wikipedia/Flickr)
Chaka Khan, Tupac and Janet Jackson (Wikipedia/Flickr)

The nominees are in for the 2017 class of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and Tupac and Chaka Khan are among them.

The organization announced the news Tuesday. Other Black entertainers include 1970s disco band Chic, Janet Jackson and the late southern soul artist Joe Tex. Classic rock bands like Journey, Electric Light Orchestra and Yes are also included.

In a change introduced in 2012, fans can vote for their favorite artists online through Dec. 6. The five performers with the highest number of votes score entries on a single ballot. Calculations for the next batch of Hall of Fame inductees include the fan ticket with the other submissions.

As usual, more than 600 singers, music industry gurus and historians will cast their vote in the process. In December, officials will announce the final five vote earners. Then, the artists will be drafted into the Hall of Fame in April 2017.

All eligible acts must have released their first album or single 25 years ago. 2016 marks Tupac’s first eligible year while Joe Tex earned nominations four times before. Still, that pales in comparison to Chic’s 11-time tally, according to Rolling Stone.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s website states 310 artists have been inducted since it launched in 1986. Past inductees include Donna Summer, Al Green, Billie Holiday and Public Enemy.

Earlier this year, N.W.A. made waves when they appeared at the ceremony. There, MC Ren joined Ice Cube to accept their induction. Although they did not perform as N.W.A., the pair took on fellow Hall of Fame member Gene Simmons’ proclamation that hip-hop is dying.

“I want to say to Gene Simmons, hip-hop is here forever,” Ren said in April. “Get used to it.”

 Cube also defended the genre’s inclusion in the organization.

“Rock ‘n’ roll is not conforming to the people who came before you but creating your own path in music and in life,” he said. “That is rock ‘n’ roll and that is us.”

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