Rage Against the Machine have responded to this morning’s news that they are among the inductees in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023. The groundbreaking band cited “a surprising trajectory” while thanking their “passionate fans” and others for their inspiration over the years.
In addition to Rage Against the Machine, the 2023 class includes Willie Nelson, Missy Elliott, Kate Bush, George Michael, Sheryl Crow, and The Spinners. With other nominees like Iron Maiden and Soundgarden missing the cut, RATM are essentially the lone “rock” act being inducted this year.
In acknowledging the honor, RATM pointed out their long record of anti-establishment in their statement, which reads as follows:
“It is a surprising trajectory for us to be welcomed into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 1991 four people in Los Angeles formed a musical group to stand where sound and and solidarity intersect. We called ourselves Rage Against the Machine.
A band who is as well known for our albums as we are for our fierce opposition to the US war machine, white supremacy, and exploitation. A band whose songs drove alternative radio to new heights while right wing media companies tried to purge every song we ever wrote from the airwaves.
A band who shut down the NY Stock Exchange for the first time in its history. A band who was targeted by police organizations who attempted to ban us from sold out arenas for raising our voices to free Mumia Abu Jamal, Leonard Peltier, and other political prisoners. A band who sued the US State Department for their fascist practice of using our music to torture innocent men in Guantanamo Bay.
A band who wrote rebel songs in an abandoned, industrial warehouse in the valley that would later dethrone Simon Cowell’s X Factor pop monopoly to occupy the number 1 spot on the UK charts and have the most downloaded song in UK history. A band who funded and organized delegations to stand with Mexican rebel Zapatista communities to expose the Mexican government’s war on indigenous people. A band whose experimentation in fusing punk, rock, and hip-hop became a genre of its own.
Many thanks to the Hall of Fame for recognizing the music and the mission of Rage Against the Machine. We are grateful to all of the passionate fans, the many talented co-conspirators we’ve worked with, and all the activists, organizers, rebels, and revolutionaries past, present, and future who have inspired our art.
-Brad, Tim, Tom, & Zack”
It is unclear whether Rage Against the Machine will perform at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony when it takes place November 3rd at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Guitarist Tom Morello recently left the status of the band up in the air, telling Rolling Stone that he was unsure if RATM would continue touring once singer Zack de la Rocha recovered from a torn achilles tendon he suffered during the second show of their reunion tour last year.
“If there is to be any more shows, we will announce it as a band,” said Morello in the interview. “I don’t know. I know as much as you do, honestly. Right now we’re in time of healing.”
See RATM’s statement on their Rock Hall induction in the Instagram post below.