The 6th annual Oregon Music Hall of Fameinduction ceremony was held at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Aladdin Theater in Portland in front of a sold-out crowd honoring the best and brightest the state has contributed to the music industry.
Perennial favorites Everclear headlined the show with a five-song set and the crowd pleasing U-Krew, an old-school hip-hop group that reformed for the first time in 20 years also performed a few hits from their only album released in 1989. The Hudson Brothers and KGON DJ Iris Harrison were also among the inductees.
Tony Starlight hosted the show and started the evening with a hilarious farce of REO Speedwagon’s “Can’t Fight This Feeling Anymore” by lamenting about getting older, but the rest of the night slowed to a crawl. Ten inductions were made which, of course, included at-times long-winded introduction speeches. Starlight said he’d keep speeches to two minutes and would tap dance behind speakers to alert them of the time. Like his shtick, he was not serious.
The evening clearly belonged to industry insiders as even big music fans may never have heard of most of the inductees. Only in its 6th year the OMHOF induction ceremony came across more like a small-town production instead of a big scale State of Oregon Hall of Fame celebration. However, none of that takes away from the OMHOF’s primary purpose which is to benefit music education for public schools. Since 2007, more than $40,000 has been raised for music education and that amount rose dramatically last night thanks to a live auction featuring 15 guitars signed by various artists including ZZ Top and Melissa Etheridge.
Most in attendance were there to see Everclear but had to wait three and half hours before one of Portland’s biggest contributions to the modern rock era of the 1990s emerged. The band’s line-up has changed over the years but front man and founder Art Alexakis continues with his brand of rock and was on tour this summer and released the strong new studio album “Invisible Stars” earlier this year.
Alexakis who no longer lives in Oregon said Everclear will always be a Portland band. He was joined on stage by previous members of the band before plugging in the amps and blistering through “I will Buy You a New life,” “Father of Mine,” “Heroin Girl,” “Wonderful,” and “Santa Monica.” Everclear made an encore of sorts and returned to the stage along with other Hall of Fame inductees who all played “Louie Louie.”
OMHOF also announced their Artist of the Year for 2011 – The Decemberists – who also took home 2011 Album of the Year honors with “The King is Dead.” To be inducted into the OMHOF, nominees must have been born in Oregon, or lived or operated in Oregon sometime in their lifetime and generally been in the music industry for a minimum of 20 years.
Oregon Music Hall of Fame 2012 Inductees:
The Hudson Brothers
Tom Robinson and Mark Sten