Earlier today, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announced its class of 2023, which included–after five nominations–Rage Against the Machine. The band has since released a statement sharing gratitude for their induction while looking back on the arduous and radical journey that preceded the honor.
“It is a surprising trajectory for us to be welcomed into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 1991 four people in Los Angeles formed a musical group to stand where sound and solidarity intersect. We called ourselves Rage Against the Machine,” The group wrote on social media. “A band who is as well known for our albums as we are for our fierce opposition to the US war machine, white supremacy, and exploitation. A band whose songs drove alternative radio to new heights while right wing media companies tried to purge every song we ever wrote from the airwaves.”
They continued, by recounting the many obstacles they overcame, writing, “A band who shut down the NY Stock Exchange for the first time in its history. A band who was targeted by police organizations who attempted to ban us from sold out arenas for raising our voices to free Mumia Abu Jamal, Leonard Peltier, and other political prisoners. A band who sued the US State Department for their fascist practice of using our music to torture innocent men in Guantanamo Bay. A band who wrote rebel songs in an abandoned, industrial warehouse in the valley that would later dethrone Simon Cowell’s X Factor pop monopoly to occupy the number 1 spot on the UK charts and have the most downloaded song in UK history. A band who funded and organized delegations to stand with Mexican rebel Zapatista communities to expose the Mexican government’s war on indigenous people. A band whose experimentation in fusing punk, rock, and hip-hop became a genre of its own.”
They closed their message by thanking the Rock Hall for “recognizing the music and the mission of Rage Against the Machine” while sharing their gratitude for their fans, “co-conspirators,” and the organizers, rebels, activists and revolutionaries past, present, and future who have inspired their art, before signing off with “-Brad, Tim, Tom, & Zack.”
Other 2023 inductees include Cheryl Crow, Kate Bush, Missy Elliot, Willie Nelson, George Michael and the Spinners. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s induction ceremony will take place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Nov. 3.
Read Rage Against the Machine’s full message below.
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