We just got back from a whirlwind road trip to Cleveland. We had the week off between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so we decided to drive up to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, because — well, why not?
I’ve heard from a few friends, both here and in Cleveland, that there are many obvious vacancies/exclusions in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (the HOF), and this is true. The HOF is not as old as ROCK, after all, and there have been a limited number of inductees into the hall each year. So some folks are undoubtedly missing that each of us would like to see there. But I recommend appreciating it for what IS there. And that is a LOT of stuff. But I wanted to see one specific exhibit that is there only until February, the Women of Rock, and that was incredible. The place also includes an unbelievable amount of rock memorabilia, starting with the very first radios and recordings and going up to the Beatles, Elvis and the Rolling Stones.
Beyond that, there is large-scale memorabilia like the concert puppets from Pink Floyd’s The Wall concert tour, and tiny things that mean so much like hand-written lyrics by people like Joan Jett and Janis Joplin. Then there are tons of instruments and stage clothes. We spent the entire day, from doors open to doors closing, and we didn’t quite see the entire thing. We tried to watch most of the movies and get into most of the exhibits but there just is more than a day’s worth of stuff in there.
The Women Who Rock exhibit let us see the original lyrics to the Runaways’ ‘Cherry Bomb’ and Siouxsie Sioux’s fur cape, as well as Lady Gaga’s meat dress. I also really loved seeing Elvis’s set list on his TCB letterhead, and one of Flavor Flav’s clock necklaces. Just so much to look at.
If you ever get the chance, visit Cleveland. Besides the HOF, there is a science museum right next door, a world-class art museum, and we also found the A Christmas Story house – where they filmed the exteriors for the classic holiday movie.
We spent a couple evenings out in suburban Lakewood, which got us to My Mind’s Eye records, an excellent independent record store, especially for vinyl collectors. There are good restaurants out that way and friendly people. Thanks Charles!