WHAT "2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony"
WHEN | WHERE Saturday night at 8 on HBO
WATCH FOR Honors for Long Beach's Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, Freeport native Lou Reed, Ringo Starr, Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble, Bill Withers, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, and The "5" Royales; and an incredible all-star jam from Starr and Paul McCartney on The Beatles' "With a Little Help From My Friends" that featured everyone from Miley Cyrus to Stevie Wonder to Dave Grohl.
MY SAY Each Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction has its own character -- some cool, some cold, some wild, some flat. The 30th induction, held at Cleveland's historic Public Hall in April, was sweet. Jett set the tone with her gracious, but still fiery, acceptance speech about why she loves rock and roll.
"Rock and roll is political," she said. "It is a meaningful way to express dissent, upset the status quo, stir up revolution and fight for human rights."
Patti Smith told loving tales about the late Reed before his wife, Laurie Anderson, revealed how he had died in her arms at their home in Southampton. She then led the crowd in a chorus of "Looooooou"s to keep his name alive.
Withers really should have his own talk show, as long as it doesn't conflict with his favorite, "Judge Judy." The "Lean on Me" singer was in fine form, cleverly taking shots at the music industry while offering loving thanks to those who had helped him.
And, of course, there was McCartney, whose warm induction of Starr was lighthearted yet still incredibly complimentary about his Beatles bandmate.
"I want to thank Paul for all those great things he told us," Starr said. "Some of them were true."
It's become rare for Rock Hall inductions to have a sense of camaraderie and rarer still for them to finish the night off with an all-star jam session. The special night in Cleveland had both, ending with amazing collaborations on "With a Little Help From My Friends" and "I Wanna Be Your Man," as pretty much everyone who had appeared during the night gathered around microphones and guitars to enjoy the moment. It's what this HBO special does as well.
BOTTOM LINE Truly one of the most likable Rock Hall classes, inducted in one of the most warmhearted, star-studded ceremonies yet.