Posts Tagged ‘Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’

Howard Stern interviews Donovan about his hits and time with The Beatles and Maharishi in India

February 11, 2014

Howard Stern Show – Donovan Interview 02/05/14

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Howard tells Donovan that he’s going to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame before he even knew, and today it’s news: Donovan, Kinks’ Ray Davies lead Songwriters Hall inductees. Check this description of the interview on the Howard Stern Show – SONG BY SONG WITH DONOVAN. Around 40 minutes into the interview Donovan talks about how they got into meditation. Some fascinating stories!

Olivia Harrison talks about George being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2004

May 11, 2012

Olivia and Dhani Harrison accept award for George after Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne induct George Harrison Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2004.

Here is a partial transcription of Olivia’s acceptance speech. Very beautiful and wise! Olivia is an exceptional person!

Here I go again. I can talk about George, you know, forever. But uh, I won’t. There was a quote by the Indian poet Tagore that George read to me one day. He said, “Blessed is he whose fame does not outshine his truth.” And here we are in the Hall of Fame. But the inductees are not chosen because of their fame, but because they expressed their truth through their music. George said that he tried to write songs that would, uh, still mean something years from now. And I think it’s safe to say that in spite of his immense fame his truth will never be out-shined or forgotten. (applause) Good.

Olivia went on to say that had George been there that night he would have thanked a lot of people. But she did thank one person in the room that George knew the longest in his life—”someone who looked after him, and all of them, from the time they were 13, for George, the end of his life, and that’s the mysterious Neil Aspinall.” And she thanked Neil for holding it together, otherwise the phenomenon (of the Beatles) might not have happened or stayed together as long as it did.

Seven years later, with Olivia’s help, . Also see: George Harrison: The not-so-quiet Beatle, article by Philip Goldberg in LA YOGA Magazine.

See George Harrison – The Last Performance (John Fugelsang), a rare and wonderful interview on VH1, where George and Ravi Shankar came in to talk about an album he had produced called, Chants of India. George also talked about a concert he gave for the Natural Law Party, and the need to educate students on how to raise their consciousness. He answered questions about his concert for Bangladesh, the first benefit concert of its kind; and how he introduced the Beatles to Transcendental Meditation when they met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi who was going to be speaking at the Hilton Hotel. He unexpectedly played some music, including a new song, Any Road, with the line, “If you don’t know where you’re going any road will take you there,” which came out on his posthumous album, Brainwashed.

Donovan shares his excitement and fulfillment after playing at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

April 21, 2012

Donovan on Playing at the Hall of Fame

April 16, 2012 | By Eric Helton

Donovan closed out his performance at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with a special version of his hit “Season of the Witch” with John Mellencamp, which he said afterward was “a great joy.” “I feel like something has been fulfilled on stage tonight which sums up my contribution to this extraordinary world of music,” the singer told Rolling Stone.

Click On performing with John Mellencamp to see video on Rolling Stone.
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Donovan: On teaching guitar technique to Beatles April 19, 2012 | By Eric Helton, Max Tiberi. Watch the video: Songwriter recalls studying Transcendental Meditation with Fab Four.
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Rock Cellar Music: The Interview
Donovan is BACK!
1960s Icon Is in Rock Hall of Fame. What’s Next? (Interview)
April 2012 by Greg Feo and Jeff Cazanov
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Listen to Michael Castner of WSJ’s The Daily Wrap interview Donovan about Transcendental Meditation: http://podcast.mktw.net/wsj/audio/20120418/pod-wsjdwdonovontm/pod-wsjdwdonovontm.mp3
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Related: Billboard interview: Donovan Q&A: Catching Up With a Folk Rock Superman | Ode to Donovan by Meghan for Altavoz: Conan introduces Donovan while holding the DLF Music vinyl box-set “Music That Changes The World” | Donovan Inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame | Spinner: Donovan Q&A, on Dylan Rivalry, Helping Paul McCartney Write ‘Yellow Submarine’
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Visit http://www.donovan.ie for more interviews. See a list of related articles and videos on Donovan’s Induction into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame
John Mellencamp Inducts Donovan Into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.
Donovan’s acceptance speech/poem is posted on Govinda Gallery by Chris Murray on May 2, 2012: Rock Around the Clock: From Kid Rock to Chris Rock. Backstage with Donovan at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Acceptance Poem

“From my wandering days on lonely sands
where I sang my song to the moon and stars
To the world’s great stage , honoured am I
to sing my song to a million fans

Always my wish to be of service
to ease emotion deep in the heart
Always your poet , a shaman am I
to lead us all to the realm within

Yet I was branded for my beauty
yet protected by my art
Many plundered me for booty
only one did steal my heart

How she keeps it in her casket
still remains a mystery
Like the moonrise in a sunset
like the silence of the sea

Thank you for this bright green laurel
resting now upon my brow
Thank you Goddess , thank you Muses
thank you … Fellow Artists All”

– Donovan Leitch Copyright ©All Rights Reserved.
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Acceptance Poem
Cleveland, Ohio
April 14 2012

Billboard interview: Donovan Q&A: Catching Up With a Folk Rock Superman

April 12, 2012

In the three months since Donovan received the news that he will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he has stepped up his activity in front of the film, TV and music industries. He performed at  the Sundance Film Festival, made numerous private performances for music supervisors and delivered a sold-out chat and performance at L.A.’s Grammy Museum.

“Good Day L.A.,” the morning show of the Los Angeles’ FOX affiliate, devoted daily segments to Donovan during the last week of  March, culminating in a live performance on March 30. Next up is the induction ceremony on April 14, which will be followed by Sony Legacy’s release of “The Essential Donovan” on April 17. HBO will air the Hall of Fame ceremony/concert on May 5.

In an interview held at his daughter’s home in the Hollywood Hills, Donovan spelled out his plan for the Rock Hall concert. “‘Sunshine Superman’, I cannot not play, but I would like to preface it with an acoustic song, probably ‘Catch the Wind.’ We’ll follow with ‘Season of the Witch.’ It looks like Jim James of My Morning Jacket (will join in). We played together at Radio City for the meditation concert and I got on really well with him so I will have the younger generation there.”

The meditation concert he referred to was held in 2009 for the David Lynch Foundation that funds the teaching of Transcendental Meditation for school-age children. Donovan, who turns 65 in May, has been an avid supporter of the Lynch Foundation, contributing a track last year to “Download For Good: Music That Changes The World.” A copy of the CD was on the coffee table so our conversation, which would touch on  poets from the 18th century up through the Beat Generation, Bob Dylan and his last studio album, the underrated 2004 release “Beat Café,” began with TM.

Billboard: Last year we heard a new song from you, “Listen.” As one of the first and most visible people to experience TM in India, how has it affected your music?

Donovan: In the early days when the Beatles and I went to India and returned, we knew our fans should have it and then the world should have it. We needed it. Flash forward 35 years later (April 4, 2009) and Paul (McCartney) and Ringo (Starr) and Donovan and David Lynch are on the stage at Radio City Music Hall announcing to the world how schools have applied this meditation. Fear and anger and doubt have been subdued somewhat. It doesn’t mean that you’ll never be angry or filled with doubt again, but you won’t hold on to it —  all things the Maharishi spoke of. This one was designed to be very applicable to the Western way of thinking. My dream was to (figure out) how do we bring in a new generation of songwriters? As it progressed, I wrote songs with meditation in them. The Beatles wrote songs with meditation in them.

What was the first song you were aware of writing because of TM?

“Happiness Runs” is the most direct one, which I wrote while in India with the Beatles and one Beach Boy (Mike Love) and Mia Farrow. Before India in ’68 I was always looking for songs where people could sing along. It’s part of the job to be a poet, folk singer — children’s songs, rounds, circular songs. And so I made this circular song “Happiness Runs” and it directly references meditation because it says ‘happiness runs in a circular motion/thought is like a little boat upon the sea.’ Simple words, but profound. More rocking was the “Hurdy Gurdy Man.” In the 18th century the hurdy gurdy man played the instrument the hurdy gurdy and he traveled from town to town and he brought the news. So I related the hurdy gurdy man in the song to the teacher, the Maharishi, who brings us songs of love.

When you said meditation affected your songwriting, the first thing I thought of was “There is a Mountain.” What’s its origin?

It comes from a Zen haiku, but it is a koan as well — the clever question asked of the student by the Zen master. “First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is.” “The caterpillar sheds its skin/to find the butterfly within.” It’s very literal. If we could discard our skin, our hard husk of persona, it’s an obvious description that inside there is a softer human. I found (sayings) in old books and by putting them into songs, I hoped they would trigger a question in the listener. By giving it a rhythm it has an attraction — people were singing my lyrics not knowing what they were about.

On a certain level, you were far ahead of your time. Musicians of the last decade seem to understand you better than the musical community of the 1980s and ’90s. Have you sensed that?

I could sit cross-legged in front of 20,000 people and play solo with one guitar (in the early 1970s tours) and a pin could drop and (be heard). I assumed even then, that everything I was singing they knew. It was just a veil hiding it. That didn’t mean that the outside world would understand the Donovan magic or the songwriting. But I have been recognized, extraordinarily so, by the audience. We’re talking 17 top 100 singles, selling out all the great concert halls of the world — Sydney Opera House, Hollywood Bowl, Royal Albert Hall, Carnegie Hall. One gets recognized by one’s peers and journalists who have a lot of experience and have studied and know where the various parts of my music came from.

There were so many facets to your music – there was a dramatic change from “Catch the Wind” to “Cosmic Wheels” and that’s just 10 years. What made you want to be more than a folk singer and bring so many other elements into your music?

I’m a sponge. When I was younger I absorbed so much music and (the story) is always the same — passed on by an older Bohemian who has a house that becomes a crossroads for visitors. Such a one was in the town of St. Albans for me. Such a one was in Minnesota for Dylan. It’s where the older Bohemian says I know what you’re up to; you better spend a few days with my record collection. In it is everything – folk, jazz, blues, classical, baroque, spoken word. I was so fascinated that I absorbed all of the styles, even the antique music of Sicily, rare flamenco from 1928. It was fascinating to me that I started dressing my lyrics in all kinds of costumes musically. Many of my contemporaries had one or two styles — folk, blues. But when I did “Sunshine Superman,” begun in 1965 and finished in May 1966, and presented so many genres blended, it was a natural thing to me. It represented what the Bohemian said: all the cultures should share the planet. That meant be brave, break the rules and walk over the genre lines and blend. I could see how it made me difficult to pin down.

At the beginning of it all, though, was folk music.

It was. (As a young boy) all the relatives would come around, the room would be cleared and a chair would be put in the middle. And a slightly tipsy relative would be pushed into the chair to sing their one song. These songs I didn’t know at the time, were folk songs from the Scottish and the Irish, about the troubles and the migrations.  Only later, when I was 15, did I learn these were called folk songs. After that my father’s record collection of Sinatra and my mother’s Billie Holiday and five-piece jazz groups from the ’30s and musicals. When I was 15 ,that would be Everly Brothers and Buddy Holly and I’d collect all the records. At 16, I plugged into a (college) campus for nine months and became aware of the older Bohemians who introduced me to the jazz club, the folk club and the coffee house and the art school and soon the blues club. After that it was easy for me to fuse (styles); I just wanted to see how far it could go. The base is always the same – the guitar and the vocal.

At some point early on, you made the decision to write songs, which many folk singers of the early 1960s did not do.

I much more wanted to be recognized as a poet than as a musician. Poetry is still looked upon as something ineffectual, narcissistic. In actual fact, the Bohemian poets in the ’40s,  their mission was to return poetry to popular culture. When you bring a poet into popular culture, two lines from a poem can alter a whole nation, it can bring a government down. The beat poets were wrong when they thought poetry would come back on the wings of jazz. Some poets were improvising with jazz improvisers in clubs, but improvisational poetry only works within improvisational music. When folk jumped into bed with rock, the form of the folk ballad would allow the new lyric (to thrive), first with Bobby Dylan then with myself and Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Neil Young. The Beatles realized it, too. They were from the Irish tradition of social activism  (in poetry) but didn’t know it. I somehow knew it, because my father had brought me up reading poetry to me of social change.  Before I heard Woody Guthrie, my father was reading poems of social consciousness to me —  Wordsmith, Coleridge, Shelly. I got fired with the zeal that we could bring something (literate) to the fans of pop music to get their teeth into.

You arrived in the U.S. as a folkie but sign to Epic and become a rock star. A conscious decision?

It came to a boil in May 1965 when Joan (Baez), Bobby and I met (as documented) in (the film) “Don’t Look Back.” At the time, folk singers, classical and jazz musicians released albums, pop music went on 45s. I was a bit ahead, releasing a single. That bit of harmless plastic, the 45, I realized was cheap, available and millions of Baby Boomers bought them. There was already something going on that I was joining (socially conscious folk-rock music). But the folk singers rebelled,saying ‘We’re not plugging in our banjos and guitars.’ Nobody understood that folk could meet pop or rock.

It wasn’t until 2004 when you did “Beat Café” that you really exposed the importance of poets on your work. Why did you decide the time was right for that project?

I was exploring the Bohemian cooking pot that was going on when folk and jazz and poetry were mixing in these special hangouts. (Producer) John Chelew suggested that I and (the bassist) Danny Thompson (record). He said ‘That’s unique when you and Danny play a drone. I’ll pay for it. Come in and we’ll do the drone for an hour.’ Before I went in, I couldn’t do just a drone. We were recording at Capitol so I thought I’ll write a song for Danny that will be like Peggy Lee’s ‘Fever.’ I’ll get  a bass line going and I’ll write about when we used to play in the clubs. It was simple. We went into the studio and did the track. My wife, Linda, was in the studio. She knows her stuff and says there’s only one drummer who can join this thing, (Jim) Keltner. In came Jim. Set up his whole kit never knowing what it was about, having never played with Danny. He’s got the big kit set up and  I went (sings bass line). He looked at me laughed, ‘OK I’m in.’ And we sang about life in the beat cafes.

Good as the album is, the shows were even better – you mixed talk about poets and their affect on your writing.

San Francisco was particularly touching because Michael McClure was there. He jumped on stage and did (a poem). In New York, in Joe’s Pub, a girl stood up on a table and pumped it out. Nobody knew her. I took it on tour in the U.K., but it wasn’t the same. Before I took it on tour, I said it can only be in a small room, a  Bohemian café and there just aren’t enough of them.

You’ve been active this year, getting out to places such as the Sundance Film Festival to perform at the BMI Snow Ball and at the musical instrument trade show NAMM. What will come out of this activity?

The music supervisors have always been friends of mine and (publisher) Peermusic is introducing me to all these (projects). I would love to do a soundtrack with the right director – I have a love of cinema and by extension TV and commercials. I’m fascinated that Gibson wants to make me a custom cherry red J-45, which I used for every album up through 1969. It was stolen in 1970 — a fan walked into a stadium in 1970 and out with the J-45. It’s never been returned. I carried around the J-45 nostalgically as a second guitar while I played my new custom guitar, the moon shaped guitar designed by Tony Zemaitis. When Gibson heard there was a wanted poster out, they decided to make a guitar. To have a custom guitar and then possibly a line of guitars for my fans, that’s a lovely thing.

VIDEOS

These videos were embedded in the interview: “Catch the Wind” — 1964, “Cosmic Wheels” — 1972, and Bob Dylan And Donovan.

Donovan Tribute Week on Good Day L.A. All week they were saluting Donovan as he gets inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Watch the Interviews in their Video Player.

Donovan Tribute Week, Poe Performs “Season Of The Witch”

Eric Burdon “Spills The Wine” Saluting Donovan!

Jackie DeShannon “Puts A Little Love In Our Hearts”

Smothers Brothers’ Tommy Gives “Big-ups” to Donovan

Spencer Davis “Keeps On Running” and Salutes Donovan!

Donovan Week Continues With Tribute From Jon Anderson of “YES”.

The Essential…Donovan!! – Live On Good Day L.A.: interview and singing

Listen to WKSU: Scottish singer-songwriter looks back at his career with WKSU’s Bob Burford: Donovan still mellow as Rock Hall honors awaits

Visit http://www.donovan.ie/en/ for more interviews.

Related posts: Ode to Donovan by Meghan for Altavoz: Conan introduces Donovan while holding the DLF Music vinyl box-set “Music That Changes The World” | Donovan Inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame | Donovan and Ben Lee on Good Day LADonovan GDLA and Off-Ramp Interviews | Donovan to be Named Icon at BMI London Awards | Mellow Fellow Donovan




Ode to Donovan by Meghan for Altavoz: Conan introduces Donovan while holding the DLF Music vinyl box-set “Music That Changes The World”

April 9, 2012

Meghan, Digital Promotions Guru for Altavoz Distribution, posted this Ode to Donovan on April 7, 2012.

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Conan O’Brien introduces Donovan while holding the David Lynch Foundation Music 34-artist vinyl box-set “Music That Changes The World.” (Cover art is a tree David Lynch had painted for Change Begins Within.)

The legendary folk-poprock singer and songwriter Donovan performed, two classics on Conan. The eclectic musician played “Sunshine Superman,” which aired live and kept “Season of the Witch” as a Conan web exclusive. The live performance also came at an opportune time before Donovan is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The talented British musician is one of the leading recording artists of his day. Best known for his laid-back track “Mellow Yellow,” which was released in 1967. Donovan produced a string of eleven Top 40 hits in a row from 1966 through 1969. In the past decade, Donovan completed a new album, Beat Café; a new box set, Try for the Sun: The Journey of Donovan; and a book, The Autobiography of Donovan: The Hurdy Gurdy Man. Now 65 years young, Donovan remains a prominent figure in the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace with his 40-year interest in Transcendental Meditation.

“It is my great pleasure to announce the vinyl release of MUSIC THAT CHANGES THE WORLD on Record Store Day,” said Donovan. “As head of the Musical Wing of The David Lynch Foundation, I wish to thank all the amazing artists who have contributed. From the beginning, when The Beatles and I were writing songs to promote Maharishi’s meditation, it was always my dream to bring all the musical fraternity onto one great label to Promote True Peace. This day has arrived and now the world can know as we knew then, that change begins within.”

The episode aired on Wednesday, March 28, and Conan gave fans a sneak peak at the David Lynch Foundation Music, vinyl box-set cover of, “Music That Changes The World,” to be released on April 21, 2012. Donovan’s exclusive track “Listen,” is featured among the 34 assorted tracks from world-renowned artists.

Donovan represents the finest level of singer, songwriter, and performer, as a true icon of Rock and Roll super-fame. He continues to present his unique vision of peace, awareness and understanding in his lifestyle and music. Tune into the 27th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of fame induction ceremony on Saturday, April 14, 2012 to see Donovan accept this monumental achievement.

Donovan Performs His Classic “Sunshine Superman” – CONAN on

Web Exclusive: Donovan “Season Of The Witch” – CONAN on TBS

Also see Music That Changes The World out on Record Store Day 2012 posted by ⋅ February 6, 2012.

About Meghan, Digital Promotions Guru

Fascinated with all things related to music and public communications, Meghan Hayden is currently a junior in American University’s School of Communication and Marketing Department. Meghan adds spunky ideas, positivity, and an array of musical knowledge to the Altavoz intern team. Born and raised in Stuart, Florida, hobbies include boating and relaxing on the beach, often listening to the smooth reggae beats of Bob Marley, the Whalers, Jimmy Cliff, and Peter Tosh. Over the past 3 years, Meghan has actively shared her eclectic music taste as DJ Megmoney on her music blog. Over the years her passion for live music has brought her to eight DMB shows, Bonnaroo 2010, Basscenter 2011 and many more rocking venues. Amongst many artists, a few of her favorite include: The Black Keys, Phoenix, Ellie Golding, Beyonce, Rihanna, The xx, Adele, Florence the Machine, Zion I, and Foster the People. View all posts by Meghan, Digital Promotions Guru

2012 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Donovan on Being Inducted On March 16, 2012, before appearing on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and Library & Archives’ panel at SXSW, 2012 Hall of Fame inductee Donovan spoke with the Rock Hall about being nominated and inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Donovan performing “Mellow Yellow” for Slacker RadioLegendary performer Donovan stopped by the Gibson Guitar Showroom in Austin TX during SXSW 2012 to perform for Slacker Radio. He is just now being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame this year. Congratulations Donovan! For more on Donovan check out http://www.slacker.com/artist/donovan.

For more on Donovan posted on The Uncarved Blog search this archive. Visit http://www.donovan.ie/en/ for more interviews.

Billboard.com: Donovan Q&A: Catching Up With a Folk Rock Superman

Listen to WKSU: Scottish singer-songwriter looks back at his career with WKSU’s Bob Burford: Donovan still mellow as Rock Hall honors awaits

Watch the trailer for a new documentary film on David Lynch titled “Meditation Creativity Peace”

Donovan Inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

December 14, 2011

Donovan on His Acceptance Into the Hall of Fame: ‘I’m Pleased as Punch’

‘I come from a very ancient, acoustic root. It was very hard to put a finger on me.’

By: Andy Greene for Rolling Stone

December 7, 2011 12:20 PM ET

Donovan fans probably think that the Scottish folk icon should have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame years ago, but we checked in with the Hurdy Gurdy Man himself while he was on vacation in Monaco – and he feels the timing is just perfect.

Tell me your first reaction to hearing the news.
It’s a singular honor, and I’m pleased as punch, as they say in England and Scotland. It’s even more special because I’m going to be there with some of my favorite artists and musicians. The Faces are my old chums. We used to hang out. The Chilis, some of them appeared on my Rick Rubin album. Guns N’ Roses, who I’ve come to know in California and did a couple of things with. Of course, the Beastie Boys. A very touching part of this, for me, is the inclusion of the lovely Laura Nyro, who left us too soon, of course. When I was younger, I followed her rise and her extraordinary work. It will be great to see her honored too.

This is a honor that’s long past due for you.
Oh, I’ve been honored from day one. Basically, as a young singer/songwriter/poet arriving at the time that I did – from out of the bohemian world and onto the popular stage – immediately I felt honored. Recognition of one’s work comes from the fans first, of course. My goodness, that’s been again and again recognized.

Honors and awards are very interesting, and I truly accept them. I have very high regard for what they mean. What they mean is that they’re pointing to the work. For me, the work was always to show others, to lead others, to experiment, to break all the rules. I’ve had lots of recognition, and interestingly enough, within the past year, from the Mojo award that Jimmy Page gave me to the Lifetime Achievement Award that the BBC gave me for the folk world.

But this one is singular. It is worldwide, and it’s very interesting because the other ones were quite local. So, no, I don’t feel that I should have had it earlier. Also, I understand that the voting committee is composed of musicians and performers and singer/songwriters. That is also wonderful. It is similar to the Academy Awards where actual makers of films give their vote. They are voting on a very special level. It is great to be honored by one’s peers. There are so many people to choose from by the voting committee. It is very, very difficult for them, I’m sure.

My particular space has always been quite unique in popular music. I have a background in R&B and hard rock and straight pop, but I never went all the way with any of those genres. I have always just experimented, and I come from a very ancient, acoustic root.  It was very hard to put a finger on me. People were always like, “What is he?” To be honored now is very timely, because I feel very much like I’ve looked at the work I’ve done, and I’ve been gathering it all together on my website. And quite a journey it’s been – but it’s not the end. No, I hope not.

See: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: 2012 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees, Friday, December 9: 1:30 p.m., posted by Rock Hall.

See: Donovan Nominated For Induction Into The 2011 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame


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