Ann Wilson and Alice in Chains rocker Jerry Cantrell joined forces to pay tribute to late pal Chris Cornell at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on Saturday night (14Apr18).
The Heart star and the grunge icon performed an emotional rendition of Black Hole Sun, Cornell’s 1994 hit with Soundgarden, shortly before Wilson inducted The Moody Blues into the Hall of Fame.
The Heart singer previously performed the track on late night show Jimmy Kimmel Live! shortly after Cornell’s death last year (May17).
Earlier in the evening, The Killers kicked off the ceremony by performing a cover of Tom Petty’s American Girl as a tribute to another late great, and Lauryn Hill stole the show with a surprise three-song salute to jazz and blues icon Nina Simone, who was among the inductees, alongside The Cars and Bon Jovi, who both enjoyed reunions.
The Cars performed together for the first time since 2011, while Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora shared a microphone for the first time since the guitarist quit the band in 2013.
Other highlights included Brittany Howard and Felicia Collins paying tribute to Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Andra Day’s pitch-perfect rendition of Simone’s I Put a Spell On You, backed by The Roots.
The Moody Blues ended the night by running through hits like I’m Just a Singer (In a Rock and Roll Band), Your Wildest Dreams, and Nights in White Satin.
The induction ceremony’s low point came as Dire Straits were inducted without fanfare. With Knopfler brothers Mark and David choosing not to attend the ceremony, there was no big induction introduction by a celebrity fan, as is customary, and it was left for bassist John Illsley to accept the group honour.
“It’s a bit weird… but life’s strange,” he told the crowd, explaining that band leader Mark Knopfler’s decision not to show up was “just a personal thing”, adding, “Let’s just leave it at that.”
Illsley was joined by former bandmates Guy Fletcher and Alan Clark for one of the shortest inductions ever.