FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

"It's kind of funny to think that...'Weird Al' Yankovic will technically qualify for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. It's even funnier that Al would technically deserve it, having consistently put out fresh material for the past twenty-some-odd years, with the bulk of his oeuvre going at least Gold."
--Dan Grote,
antiMUSIC.com

PICK A QUESTION. ITS CONTENTS WILL HELP YOU ALONG YOUR WAY.

The Five Ws

What is Make the Rock Hall "Weird?"
Who is behind it?
Is Al involved with it?
Does Al know about it?
Is Al's management involved with it?
Do others in Al's circle know about it, such as the band?
Where is it based in?
When did it launch?
I keep finding different URLs for the web site. Which is correct?
Why are fans doing this?

Love Me Like a Rock Hall

What is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?
Where is the Rock Hall?
Hey, but isn't Greg also in Cleveland?
Does this mean people in Cleveland are deciding who gets inducted?
How does the Rock Hall induct people?
When are the nomination ballots sent out?
Exactly who gets to decide who gets inducted?
Where does the induction ceremony take place?
When is the next induction ceremony?
Can I go to an induction ceremony?
Who will be inducted at this next ceremony?
Isn't this that thing that VH1 airs, with the big loud jam at the end?
This Rock Hall sounds like fun. Where can I learn more general info?

All About Al

Who is "Weird Al" Yankovic?
Why should Al be inducted into the Rock Hall?
When did Al become eligible for induction?
When was the earliest Al could have been inducted?
Does Al think he is worthy of induction?
Is Al represented anywhere in the Rock Hall now?
Has Al ever visited the Rock Hall?
Has Al ever parodied any Rock Hall inductees?
I mean, I like Weird Al, but c'mon...the Rock Hall? Should he really be inducted?

What Can We Do?

Okay, I'm in! What do we need to do?
Where do we need to send such convincing mail?
I don't live in the United States. Where do I send mail to?
Can I e-mail my support to the Rock Hall?
Who is Joel Peresman?
Wait a second. Wasn't there someone else we were supposed to write to?
What will Mr. Peresman do with the mail I send him?
Why can't I just write directly to the committee members themselves?
But I don't want to harass someone at work. Is this cool with the foundation?
Does the Rock Hall Foundation know about all this?
Has anyone ever done anything like this before?
But I've heard that the selection of Rock Hall inductees is quite biased, and that it's this big political mess. Is that true? And if so, then what's the point of all this?

The Great Greeting Card Project

So, what's going on right now? What's the game plan?

Hey, a Movie!

What's this I hear about you guys making a movie?
What's the movie going to be about?
Why is this being done?
Will you need help?
I want to help out with the movie. What can I do?
I want to be a "field operative." How do I volunteer?
How should I interview people?
How long will I have to tape people? Will there be a deadline?
What should I do with all my footage when I am finally, absolutely done taping?
What format do I have to send it in?
I live outside of the United States. Can I still help out with the documentary?
Will I get on-screen credit for helping out?
I have another question about the documentary that's not covered here. What do I do?

10,000 Maniacs (Petition 2006-2007)

Weren't you guys doing this really big petition a while ago?
When was this done?
How many cities did this petition turn up in?
Was there a goal for this petition?
Why was such a goal set?
Was this a physical paper petition or an online one?
Will there ever be an online petition?
Wait a minute. How did this petition get around?
What did the signature counter on the main page indicate?
Did anyone noteworthy sign this petition?
Did anyone noteworthy refuse to sign?
How many signatures were eventually collected?
When was it sent?
How did the Rock Hall Foundation react to it?
Will there be a petition again this year?

50 States in 48 Weeks (2005 Project)

Was this that thing in which Al fans in every state were being asked for help?
When did this take place?
Why was this angle approached?
But why do this for only forty-eight weeks and not fifty?
What were fans asked to send in the mail when their week came up?
What was with that map and that weird timetable thing that were on the main page?
Were fans who lived outside of the United States allowed to volunteer to send mail?
How many folks ended up volunteering and in which states?
What was the mailing schedule?
Who were the "Fans Abroad?"
Weren't there these funny little intros for each state that was being highlighted?

That's Me in the Corner, That's Me in the Spotlight, Losing My Petition (2004)

Wait a second. Didn't you guys already do a petition?
When was this done?
How many cities did this petition turn up in?
Did anyone noteworthy sign the petition?
Did anyone noteworthy refuse to sign?
How many signatures were eventually collected?
When was it sent?

Miscellaneous Questions

Who's Gordon?
Is this that thing with fans trying to get Al a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame?
Do I need to send money for this campaign?
Can I buy Make the Rock Hall "Weird" stuff anywhere?
Are you guys on MySpace?
Has there ever been a grassroots campaign for Weird Al before?
What's this I hear about someone showing UHF for this?
I am a member of the press. Where do I go?
Are you going to contact celebrities to help out, such as those whom Al has parodied?
I know someone who might want to help. What do I do?
I have an idea. Whom do I bug?
Is there an official message board or chat room to discuss the campaign?

And in the End....

Are there enough of us fans to pull this off?
Seriously now--no hype, no spin, no delusions--can we do this? Can we actually get Weird Al inducted?


The Five Ws

What is Make the Rock Hall "Weird?"

Make the Rock Hall "Weird" is a massive global grassroots campaign with the single goal of getting "Weird Al" Yankovic inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Who is behind it?

Make the Rock Hall "Weird" consists entirely of Al fans from around the world. This campaign is the total sum of cooperation among them, either through brainstorming, recruiting, creativity, legwork, or numerous other ways.

If a person needs to be blamed, then a lot of the organizing, managing, and webmastering is done by Greg Method, the Cleveland-based fan behind such other Al projects as The "Weird Al" Yankovic Songography and the quasi-popular fan site All Things Yankovic. But Greg is always quick to point out that the success of this campaign is dependent on the numerous other fans who have participated and volunteered their time.

Is Al involved with it?

No, no, and no. Al is NOT involved with this campaign in any way, shape, or form...um, other than by being the subject, of course. And frankly, we kinda prefer it that way. Not that we'd turn down any advice the man may have, but c'mon, it would just be really cheesy if a rock star was doing their own campaigning for something like this (right, Wanda Jackson?). This is the kind of thing a fan base is for.

Does Al know about it?

Yes! After a show over the summer of 2004 he was presented with a page of our petition, which he happily signed (but, just to be clear, it was in an autography way, not in an "I'm campaigning for myself" way).

Although Al has joked in the past that he doesn't think he's really all that worthy of Rock Hall induction, he seemed genuinely touched that fans were nevertheless out there trying to make it happen.

This sentiment was more or less repeated when the topic came up in September 2005 during Al's onstage appearance at the ACME Comedy Theatre in Los Angeles for a live stage-show version of What's My Line?

We have since presented Al with a number of campaign items, including a customized volunteer shirt, to show our endless gratitude to him for letting this campaign evolve and breathe without any problems or confrontation, as a lot of other celebrities would easily stop such fan efforts with the bat of an eyelash.

Is Al's management involved with it?

No, and again we can't make that clear enough. Before the campaign started we made every effort to let Al's manager, Jay Levey, know we were planning to do this, just in case he had a problem with it. Instead, Jay gave us an encouraging response back and wished us well, but that should not be interpreted to mean that Al or Jay are officially endorsing or sponsoring this campaign in any way.

The one thing that should be made absolutely clear is that this is being organized and produced solely by the fans.

Do others in Al's circle know about it, such as the band?

Yep. A variety of people close to Al, from the band to members of Al's touring crew to even Al's wife, have shared kind words with us about the campaign from time to time.

And of course, we should definitely mention that Dr. Demento knows about this campaign, as he actually mentioned it on his show!

Where is it based in?

Wherever there's a fight so hungry people can't eat, wherever there's a cop beating up on a guy--err, sorry, wrong answer.

This is sort of a moot question, since thanks to the supposedly numerous Internets out there location is now more of a state of mind. Fans can volunteer, gather, and plan all from the luxury of their homes, so in an odd philosophical sense the campaign's location is wherever an individual fan happens to be at the moment. This web site is probably the closest thing the campaign will have to a physical presence in of itself...therein.

Or, for those of you who don't like a B.S. answer, let's just say Cleveland and be done with it.

When did it launch?

Make the Rock Hall "Weird" officially launched on July 9, 2004, although some of the earliest events associated with the campaign had already been announced, and the web site had already gone online, in the days before that.

Planning for the campaign began a good year before the launch date. We probably would have started sooner if not for the Rock Hall Foundation continually dragging its feet on giving us answers to our very difficult queries, such as "What is your mailing address?"

I keep finding different URLs for this web site. Which is correct?

They all are. When Make the Rock Hall "Weird" first launched, the web site was presented as a section on Greg's All Things Yankovic site (which makes sense). At the time All Things Yankovic was on AOL with a really complicated URL, so a small "gateway" page was put up at Greg's own domain, Dohtem.com. The page would then automatically take a visitor to the Make the Rock Hall "Weird" site. It was decided that as far as advertising the campaign site goes, "dohtem.com/al" was easier for people to both remember and spell than "members.aol.com/allthngynk/rockhall."

In July 2005 All Things Yankovic moved to its own domain, Allthingsyank.com, making the direct URL for the Make the Rock Hall "Weird" site a little easier to comprehend. But of course since the domain graduation happened in mid-campaign, many media and web site mentions will still list the Dohtem.com address. This is absolutely fine, since it will now simply take folks to the new URL on Allthingsyank.com.

At the moment both the Dohtem.com and the Allthingsyank.com URLs are considered the "official" addresses for Make the Rock Hall "Weird." Whether or not we'll drop the Dohtem.com address in the future remains to be seen.

So, for those of you just joining us, these are all the ways one can get to Make the Rock Hall "Weird":

www.allthingsyank.com/rockhall
www.dohtem.com/al
rockhall.allthingsyank.com

Everyone got all that?

Why are fans doing this?

Well, who else is going to do this? Prince?!?

Seriously, individual fans may have different motives, but in a very loose general sense Al fans have always enjoyed trying to find ways to salute their idol. Maybe it's because Al offers so much yet asks for so little in return outside of a concert ticket or CD purchase, maybe it's because fans always come across others who simply have never heard of him, or maybe it's because fans have to work twice as hard to get Al the mainstream respect and recognition that comes so easily for other artists. Who knows.

Or maybe, just maybe, it's because Al deserves to be so honored and we want to do everything in our power to help make that happen.

Love Me Like a Rock Hall

What is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

Opened in 1995, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum (or "Rock Hall" for short) educates visitors on the impact of the popular music genre while also honoring those artists who have helped define it, left a unique mark on it, or have inspired subsequent generations.

The museum offers a variety of activities and exhibits, from displaying authentic instruments, props, and outfits to screening original and classic rock movies. It also hosts numerous temporary exhibits throughout the year that focus on specific artists or subgenres.

Although some critics do frown upon it, and others debate its merits, the Rock Hall has become the quintessential mecca for the rock enthusiast.

Where is the Rock Hall?

The Rock Hall is located in Cleveland, Ohio, the official birthplace of the "rock n' roll" genre (or, at least, the name). The museum is situated right on the shore of Lake Erie.

Hey, but isn't Greg also in Cleveland?

What a co-inky-dink, eh?

Does this mean people in Cleveland are deciding who gets inducted?

No. That task belongs to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, located in New York.

How does the Rock Hall induct people?

According to the hall's web site:

"The Foundation's nominating committee, composed of rock and roll historians, selects nominees each year in the Performer category. Ballots are then sent to an international voting body of more than 500 rock experts. Those performers who receive the highest number of votes - and more than 50 percent of the vote - are inducted. The Foundation generally inducts five to seven performers each year."

Although this info is not usually reported, a March 2009 MSNBC story indicated that the nominating committee meets every September in New York, where each member offers three potential artists for nomination. The committee than argues and debates each choice, no doubt via a steel cage match. The pool of artists gets whittled down to the top twenty favorites among the committee, which then picks nine to make up the list of nominees.

"It's not really that this one sold this many albums or this many tickets," claims Foundation president and CEO Joel Peresman. "It's really 'What's the significance of that artist? And why should they be inducted?'"

There are currently thirty-two members to the nominating committee. At least one list has been leaked online naming exactly who is on the committee, but individual names are rarely officially revealed by the Rock Hall itself.

According to the Foundation's former executive director Suzan Evans, the nominating committee consists primarily of "music historians. Most of them are writers; some are producers or record company executives. All have a great deal of knowledge about music."

"There's musicians, there's writers, there's critics, there's people from the live end, managers," Peresman elaborates. "(It's) a wide selection of people who have all been selected because we feel that they have a good, solid connection to a wide variety of music. Everybody knows a lot about different things, which is what the idea is."

When are the nomination ballots sent out?

Although a specific date is never announced, ballots traditionally go out in mid-September.

Exactly who gets to decide who gets inducted?

Like with the nominating committee, there has never been an official list indicating exactly who receives a Rock Hall ballot, but no doubt the supposed 500+-member voting body runs the gamut of rock historians and corporate big-wigs. God forbid the public, who pays admission to get into the museum, gets to have a say, eh?

All that is known for sure is that the voting body includes all past Rock Hall inductees.

Curiously, in recent years the reported number of voters has fluctuated. For the longest time, the Rock Hall museum's web site boasted an "international voting body of about 1,000," even when press releases issued by the Rock Hall Foundation claimed "over 500 voters." Such a discrepancy might be due to the fact that in the last couple of years, it has been reported that many voting members have simply refused to turn in their ballots, some even in protest to the induction choices offered.

Where does the induction ceremony take place?

Traditionally in New York at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. However, the 2009 ceremony took place in Cleveland at Public Hall.

When was the most recent induction ceremony?

April 4, 2009

Can I go to an induction ceremony?

Not usually, unless you have about $2,500 to get in, are invited, or are a member of the press. The 2009 ceremony, however, was open to the public. Tickets were priced at $35 and $75 with a two-ticket limit per person. They quickly sold out.

Actually, if you look hard enough, there are some pretty depressing accounts floating around from people who have been fortunate enough to attend an induction ceremony, so it might be a good idea to sit it out anyway.

Who was inducted at this last ceremony?

The inducted performers were Jeff Beck, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Metallica, Run-D.M.C., and Bobby Womack.

Rockabilly queen Wanda Jackson was also inducted as an Early Influence; while songwriter and session keyboardist Spooner Oldham, Elvis bassist Bill Black, and Elvis drummer D.J. Fontana were inducted in the Sideman category.

Isn't this that thing that VH1 airs, with the big loud jam at the end?

Usually yes, and sometimes MTV2 would air a little something induction-related as well. In 2007, however, VH1 Classic aired the entire ceremony live. This marked the first time a ceremony had been aired in its entirety. In 2009, the broadcast rights switched to the Fuse network.

So, if Al ever gets inducted, you would most probably be able to see a part of the ceremony.

This Rock Hall sounds like fun. Where can I learn more general info?

Why, you can simply go to the Rock Hall's official web site!

All About Al

Who is "Weird Al" Yankovic?

H'oh boy. "Weird Al" Yankovic is a comedic, accordion-playing musician who was first made popular in the late 1970s via radio's Dr. Demento Show and then since the 1980s via music videos on MTV. Although he is an acclaimed composer in his own right, Al is best known for recording parodies of current hit songs. Some of his most popular parodies have been "White & Nerdy," "Fat," "Another One Rides the Bus," "Yoda," "Like a Surgeon," "Smells Like Nirvana," "Amish Paradise," and of course "Eat It."

Al's releases have sold over 12 million copies worldwide, have earned him forty-two Gold and Platinum Records spanning three countries, have been nominated eleven times for Grammy Awards, and have received three of such awards, making Al the most successful comedy recording artist of all time. Outside of his music, Al also co-wrote and starred in the contemporary cult classic film UHF and the short-lived Saturday morning series The Weird Al Show, not to mention the mockumentary video The Compleat Al, the concert video "Weird Al" Yankovic Live!, a much-praised title sequence in Leslie Nielsen's James Bond spoof Spy Hard, the upcoming 3-D movie Al's Brain, and a wildly popular series of comedy specials for MTV and VH1.

Why should Al be inducted into the Rock Hall?

We have a whole page set up that covers this question nicely.

When did Al become eligible for induction?

According to the Rock Hall itself, "artists become eligible for induction twenty-five years after the release of their first record." Although the rules are a bit ambiguous on this point, we had it independently confirmed that a "first record" can apply to either a single or an album. The Rock Hall Foundation finally cleared up this point in an October 2006 press release, stating that "an act must have released its first single or album at least 25 years prior to the year of nomination."

Al's first single, "My Bologna," was released by Capitol Records in December 1979, making Al eligible for induction since 2004.

When was the earliest Al could have been inducted?

Because of the way the induction process works, the first year Al could have been inducted into the Rock Hall was in 2005. The one-year spillover is because, in Al's case, the 2004 inductees were decided in late 2003, at a time in which Al wasn't eligible. No artist can be inducted in the same year they become eligible. It's kinda screwy that way.

Does Al think he is worthy of induction?

Well, the official, "zany" answer Al gives during interviews is he feels that his chances of getting inducted are about as good as Milli Vanilli's (one variation of this joke utilized Right Said Fred), but as mentioned earlier, when Al was informed about our little campaign, he seemed quite appreciative.

Is Al represented anywhere in the Rock Hall now?

A clip of the "Fat" video has been briefly included in an MTV-sponsored video exhibit called Video Killed the Radio Star spotlighting the importance to rock and roll of...well, what else, music videos. As of December 2005, this exhibit is located in the museum on the second floor.

And of course, Al is well-stocked in the Rock Hall's FYE store with both CDs and reissue 45s, but that doesn't really count (FYE employees aren't even allowed to use the Rock Hall's own employee parking lot, if that's any indication of how the museum regards the gift shop that shares its space).

Has Al ever visited the Rock Hall?

Why, yes he has. The Rock Hall's web site used to feature a photo of Al posing in front of a Talking Heads exhibit as he checked out the museum in May 2000, but in February 2007 the image was taken down as part of a major overhaul of the site.

Has Al ever parodied any Rock Hall inductees?

Has he?? You better believe it! In addition to being a successful artist in his own right, Al is also a great appreciator for the heritage of rock and roll, and his parodies end up being half-salute and half-satire.

Artists are listed in order of induction. For instances in which Al has tackled an artist more than once, usually just the most prominent example is listed.

Out of Rock Hall inductees, Al has parodied or polkafied....

James Brown ("Living with a Hernia")
Aretha Franklin ("Freeway of Love" in "Polka Party!")
The Beatles ("Hey Jude" in "Polkas on 45")
The Rolling Stones ("The Hot Rocks Polka")
The Kinks ("Yoda")
The Who ("My Generation" in "Polkas on 45")
Ike and Tina Turner (Tina's "What's Love Got to Do With It?" in "Hooked on Polkas")
The Jimi Hendrix Experience ("Hey Joe" in "Polkas on 45")
The Doors ("L.A. Woman" in "Polkas on 45")
The Animals ("House of the Sesame Seed Bun," performed live)
Led Zeppelin ("Black Dog" in "Trapped in the Drive-Thru")
The Jackson Five ("State of Shock" in "Hooked on Polkas")
The Eagles ("Avocado," performed live)
Billy Joel ("Ode to a Superhero")
Paul McCartney ("Chicken Pot Pie," performed live)
Aerosmith ("Living in the Fridge")
Michael Jackson ("Eat It," "Fat")
Queen ("Another One Rides the Bus," "Bohemian Polka")
Paul Simon ("Hit Me with a Rock," unreleased)
Ritchie Valens ("Lasagna")
Talking Heads ("Burning Down the House" in "Polkas on 45")
The Clash ("Should I Stay or Should I Go?" in "Polkas on 45")
The Police ("King of Suede")
George Harrison ("(This Song's Just) Six Words Long")
ZZ Top ("Sharp Dressed Man" in "Hooked on Polkas")
The Pretenders ("Bad Boys Get Spanked" in 1982-1983 live polka medley)
U2 ("Cavity Search")
R.E.M. ("Spam")
Madonna ("Like a Surgeon")
John Mellencamp ("Homer & Marge" on The Simpsons)
Metallica ("Enter Sandman" in "Polka Your Eyes Out")

I mean, I like Weird Al, but c'mon...the Rock Hall? Should he really be inducted?

Has there been any other artist who has made a successful career at making fun of rock and roll? Has there been anyone else who has become synonymous with comedic rock? Has there been anyone else whose very name makes one think about the current music scene and how it could be parodied?

Al has an incredible reputation, and it would be a crime if he wasn't honored alongside the very artists who have inspired him.

What Can We Do?

Okay, I'm in! What do we need to do?

We need to convince the Rock Hall's nominating committee to consider Al for induction, and the only way we can do that is by writing to them to show our support.

Where do we need to send such convincing mail?

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation
Attn: Joel Peresman
1290 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10104

I don't live in the United States. Where do I send mail to?

Hope you're ready for this.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation
Attn: Joel Peresman
1290 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10104
USA

Can I e-mail my support to the Rock Hall?

Unfortunately no. Even though the museum itself has a web site, the Rock Hall Foundation does not have a public online presence.

Besides, even if there was an e-mail address available, we would still prefer it if fans sent normal "snail mail" letters. Time and time again it has been shown that a paper letter is regarded higher than e-mail, as it shows more of a physical, somehow more sincere effort on the part of the sender.

Who is Joel Peresman?

Joel Peresman is the president and chief executive officer of the Rock Hall Foundation. He assumed this role on July 5, 2006 after having previously served as chief operating officer of Clear Channel Entertainment's NY Music division and as executive vice president of entertainment for Madison Square Garden.

Wait a second. Wasn't there someone else we were supposed to write to?

Yes. Originally we encouraged fans to write to the Rock Hall Foundation in care of Mr. Peresman's predecessor, Suzan Evans, who was the foundation's executive director before stepping down to spend more time with her family. She has not only been with the organization since its inception in 1983, but she was also one of the key architects behind it. Ms. Evans continues to serve on the foundation's board of directors and the nominating committee.

What will Mr. Peresman do with the mail I send him?

Although Mr. Peresman has yet to go on record about what he plans to do with correspondence he receives, Ms. Evans talked about this in a March 2002 article in the Detroit News, in which she claimed to pass along petitions and mail to the nominating committee. At the moment we assume Mr. Peresman will do the same.

As Ms. Evans was quoted in the article, "I do advise the committee about letters we're getting. We have research that they're presented with about all the eligible artists, and I tell them about any petitions that we get or well-written letters outlining somebody's credentials. Quite honestly, it's information they know, but I feel if somebody goes to the trouble of putting this together, it deserves to be passed on."

Why can't I just write directly to the committee members themselves?

Well, there are three reasons for this.

First, the Rock Hall Foundation does not publicly announce who exactly is on the nominating committee (outside of its chairman, Springsteen manager Jon Landau). As mentioned earlier, there are a few lists floating around online that claim to know who is on the committee, but since authoritative sources are never credited, most of these lists are most likely just the results of some educated guesswork.

Second, we're not really sure where such mail would go. The Rock Hall Foundation doesn't offer a specific "Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee" address, and we don't want to pass along "fan mail" addresses that may or may not actually go to a person in question. If you're going to take the time to write a letter, postcard, or whatever, the last thing we're going to do is send you on a wild goose chase as to where to send it.

And finally, it's always been a moot point since Ms. Evans used to forward mail to the nominating committee anyway, a practice, like we said, we assume Mr. Peresman will continue. If you send your mail to him, they will get it. It really couldn't get much easier.

But I don't want to harass someone at work. Is this cool with the foundation?

This is absolutely fine with the foundation. In fact, it was Ms. Evans's own assistant who advised us to use the above mailing address, as people often ask where they can send induction requests for certain artists. We wouldn't have posted an address without consulting with the foundation first.

Does the Rock Hall Foundation know about all this?

If they didn't when we started this, then they certainly know now. Actually, the foundation was made aware of our campaign early on, and they didn't seem to have any objections to it. So be it then.

For what it's worth, though, we seem to be on the Rock Hall museum's Christmas card list, so hey, that's something!

Has anyone ever done anything like this before?

Well evidently people are always sending suggestions and requests to the foundation, but as far as a full-blown grassroots campaign? We only know of one past effort that seems to have done well, but whether or not it was even necessary is arguable...since it was for George Harrison. We like to think he would have gotten in regardless.

After the 2006 nominees were announced, a couple of press mentions indicated that mellow folk artist Cat Stevens's nomination was the result of a petition drive. This may very well be true, but we certainly didn't come across any reference to it beforehand.

We won't go into specifics in order to spare the person of slight embarrassment of ignorance, but in May 2005 we sent a press release to a fairly known rock critic at a really famous newspaper on the West Coast (who also reportedly now serves on the nominating committee). He wrote back, rather coldly, "Don't see it as a story. Dozens of acts are trying to get in and they have campaigns." When we wrote back and politely asked if he could elaborate on any of these "dozens" that have campaigns, we never heard back from him. Oh well.

There may be a very good reason why he never named any of these supposed dozens of acts. Right now, most fan drives seem to consist solely of Internet petitions, but a quick search indicates that ours is currently one of the very few more-traditional campaigns with actual people doing actual projects and actually recruiting actual others to actually help out.

Recently, Kiss fans have launched a grassroots campaign of their own, feeling that the makeup-wearing group has been deliberately ignored year after year. For the longest time there didn't seem to be a regular Internet presence for their effort, but in late September 2005 the group made headlines with its plans to stage a massive rally at the Rock Hall in August 2006. Most papers that picked up the story failed to mention that the foundation, rather than the museum itself, chooses the nominees.

But I've heard that the selection of Rock Hall inductees is quite biased, and that it's this big political mess. Is that true? And if so, then what's the point of all this?

Yeah, there are all these rumors about the supposed underhandedness of the induction process, such as how some acts are purposefully shut out every year or how the nominations are ultimately decided by one person. There may very well be some kernels of truth to all that (after all, a number of past "non-performer" inductees currently serve or have served on the nominating committee), but despite what some punk-rock magazine or whatever may suggest, the only ones who are going to know for sure are those on the actual nominating committee.

Regardless, the point of our efforts is to get the nominating committee to seriously consider Al as a legitimate artist and influence on the genre, no matter his musical style. We can't assume that they've already made decisions about Al, one way or the other. Even if they've already dismissed him, we still need to show them that there are millions of people out there who support him and consider him to be every bit as relevant to the rock scene as any "straight" artist.

The fact remains that, even if it's a flawed system, this is the official process of how artists get inducted. We can either do nothing, or we can do our best to work within that process.

The Great Greeting Card Project

So, what's going on right now? What's the game plan?

We are currently urging fans to send greeting cards to the Rock Hall Foundation. They can be store-bought or made from scratch, just as long as they convey one simple message: INDUCT WEIRD AL!

You can find out more about this year's project by going to this page!

Hey, a Movie!

What's this I hear about you guys making a movie?

We are currently gathering video footage of our efforts, with the goal in mind of compiling a documentary on the campaign. It will ready for release in the fall of 2009.

As we're working on the video, we will also be strongly encouraging fans to continue sending letters to the Rock Hall Foundation on Al's behalf.

What's the movie going to be about?

Ideally, we will be chronicling our campaign, but we will also be tracing Al's popularity and exploring why it would be nearly impossible for someone like Weird Al to become a new mainstream artist today.

The movie will also serve as an open video letter to the Rock Hall's nominating committee, where fans can voice their support for Al's induction with sincere, personal pleas.

But in reality, the subject of the documentary will depend greatly on what kind of footage we will be capturing or receiving, but for now let's just keep our fingers crossed.

Why is this being done?

Because unfortunately, the Rock Hall Foundation has no public presence; no public "face." So, to counteract that, we'll be open and upfront about wanting Al inducted. And maybe, just maybe, it will help get people on our side who might not have known about our campaign otherwise.

Will you need help?

Um, yep!

We're going to want fellow Al fans around the country relating the stories of their fandom, either being shot by us or on their own.

This will not, repeat, NOT be in the "laughing at" style of the Trekkies movies. This will be a loving look at our fellow fans, our hero, and the goal we all share. We want fans to be sincere, genuine, and compassionate.

I want to help out with the movie. What can I do?

There are lots of ways one can help out.

A fan can tape themselves asking the Rock Hall to induct Al, talking about why they like Al, what his music may mean to them, his place in rock history, etc.

If someone wanted to make some sort of Al-themed project, such as Al artwork or writing a song about Al (just for very general examples), we would love to see video footage of them working on that.

One can always interview fellow fans on camera and get them to talk about why they want to see Al inducted. (SEE BELOW FOR GUIDELINES ON INTERVIEWING OTHERS)

And of course, we'll need crew members to help with all areas of production, from brainstorming to editing. We want this to be as much of an all-inclusive project as possible.

A list of specific things we need can be found on our documentary wishlist page.

I want to be a "field operative." How do I volunteer?

Why, you just send us an e-mail!

You will need some very important things in order to volunteer:
1. A video camera (essential...duh).
2. Blank media (also quite needed).
3. Adobe Reader (which can be downloaded for free) or any program that can open PDF files.
4. A printer (unfortunately, not available for free).
3. Access to a photocopier (optional).
4. Ability to send packages in the mail when you're all done (mandatory).

Just tell us that you want to volunteer, and we'll set you up. For security purposes and for emergency contact, we ask that you please include your mailing address and a reliable daytime phone number in your e-mail.

We need people committed to helping out. Please do not volunteer to cover an upcoming event if you may change your mind or otherwise be unable to follow through. The campaign loses a considerable amount of both time and money whenever a volunteer bails on us. We need people we can count on!

If you have trouble using the link above to e-mail us, we can be reached at "rockhall" at "allthingsyank" dot "com." Please make your e-mail subject clear and to the point in case we need to weed it out of our spam filter. Thank you.

How should I interview people?

Technically, you can simply point the camera at them and ask them questions from behind, or, if you have another volunteer helping you, you can even appear on camera with them and ask them questions.

DO NOT TAPE ANYONE WITHOUT PERMISSION. MAKE SURE YOU GET THEIR CONSENT FIRST! And of course, before interviewing children make sure you first ask their parent or guardian if it's okay.

As far as questions go, we'll give you some guidelines once you officially volunteer, but questions such as "How long have you been an Al fan?", "Do you think he should be in the Rock Hall?", "How many times have you seen him live?", etc., will suffice.

IMPORTANT! We will provide you with a standard release form that you must print out and have people sign before they can appear on camera. This is mandatory if someone wants to appear in the final documentary. If we do not have their signature on the form (or their parent's signature if they are a minor), then we cannot use the footage, thus wasting your time and work. Keeping track of this form and having it filled out is your responsibility!

How long will I have to tape people? Will there be a deadline?

The final place we will taping interviews is at the upcoming Weird Al fan convention, Al Fest, in suburban Los Angeles on August 1. We will stop accepting video submissions very soon after that.

What should I do with all my footage when I am finally, absolutely done taping?

We will ask that you send it to Greg, who will then determine what can be used and how. The next time you will see it will hopefully be in the final movie.

What format do I have to send it in?

At the moment, we will be able to accept most physical cassette formats, such as VHS and Beta. If you're, however, sending a video file such as on a CDR or a DVD-R, we can currently only accept files in .AVI format or .MPG format (specifically, MPG-2).

I live outside of the United States. Can I still help out with the documentary?

Of course! We are well aware of Al's popularity overseas, and we definitely want as many people as possible to participate. All of the same guidelines and such apply.

Keep in mind, though, that the final movie will be in NTSC video format (29.97 frames per second) and all footage we receive must already be formatted as such.

Will I get on-screen credit for helping out?

Of course! All of our field operatives and runners will be credited in the final movie.

I have another question about the documentary that's not covered here. What do I do?

Wow, really? Well okay, simply send us an e-mail.

10,000 Maniacs (Petition 2006-2007)

Weren't you guys doing this really big petition a while ago?

For the entire year of 2007, and with some spillover in both 2006 and 2008, we embarked on one of our biggest campaign projects ever, a petition circulated around the world. Like in 2004, "field operatives" stood outside at Al concerts and other Al events to collect signatures. The petition was eventually sent to the Rock Hall Foundation.

When was this done?

This petition drive officially ran from September 26, 2006 to March 31, 2008, although some early, unofficial work on the petition was done in the months before that start date.

How many cities did this petition turn up in?

The petition showed up at sixty-one concerts, one album signing, one TV taping, and even one holiday parade in a total of fifty-seven cities in the United States, Canada, and Australia.

The 2007 petition tour schedule can be found here.

Was there a goal for this petition?

Ideally we wanted to collect at least 10,000 signatures supporting Al.

Why was such a goal set?

It has been reported that the Rock Hall Foundation will consider petitions of such magnitude. In fact, some have credited Cat Stevens's 2005 nomination with such a petition drive. So, what's good enough for Yusuf is good enough for Yankovic, right?

Was this a physical paper petition or an online one?

Paper all the way, baby. This consisted of physical people physically approaching others and physically collecting physical signatures...physically.

Will there ever be an online petition?

If there is, we won't be involved with it. It seems most "Get this person into the Rock Hall" campaigns are really just online petitions, and we want our effort to be unique and stand out. Not to knock them at all, but most businesses and organizations, should they be on the receiving end of a petition for whatever reason, usually prefer traditional paper ones and often frown upon online petitions.

Besides, there already is at least one online petition out there collecting cyber signatures for Al. We don't want to muscle in on their territory.

Wait a minute. How did this petition get around?

Through magic...not to mention secret online PDF files and copy machines.

What did the signature counter on the main page indicate?

The counter represented the number of actual returned signatures that were at the moment in Greg's hands that could be sent off to the Rock Hall Foundation at that second if need be.

Did anyone noteworthy sign this petition?

You mean besides everyone who signed it?

We were so excited about the eclectic mix of Al's friends, colleagues, and celebrity fans who helped out. In alphabetical order they include....

Barenaked Ladies, who not only allowed Al to parody their smash hit "One Week" as "Jerry Springer" but also appeared on the first episode of The Weird Al Show

Hamish Blake: Australian comedian and regular on the game show Spicks and Specks, on which Al appeared in early 2007

James Blunt, whose 2006 pop hit "You're Beautiful" became Al's label-suppressed online hit "You're Pitiful"

Alan Brough: New Zealand comedian and team captain on the Australian game show Spicks and Specks, on which Al appeared in early 2007

Sandra Boynton: the critically acclaimed humorist, composer, and children's author who invited Al to sing on her book/album Dog Train

Jim Gaffigan: stand-up comedian and My Boys star

Seth Green: the Austin Powers and Buffy the Vampire Slayer star who not only appeared in Al's "White & Nerdy" video but also co-produced Al's Robot Chicken-styled "Weasel Stomping Day" video for Straight Outta Lynwood

Hard 'n Phirm: modern comedy group

Adam Hills: Australian comedian, Al fan, and host of the game show Spicks and Specks, on which Al appeared in early 2007

Thomas Lee: Flash pioneer and "Star Wars Gangsta Rap" animator who directed Al's "I'll Sue Ya" video on Straight Outta Lynwood

David Lovelace: creator of the Retarded Animal Babies online cartoons and animation director behind Al's "Virus Alert" video on Straight Outta Lynwood

Bill Mumy: one half of comedy legends Barnes and Barnes, Lost in Space star, writer, and musician who invited Al to perform on the sole album by one of his many projects, the comic book-influenced group Seduction of the Innocent

Leslie Nielsen: legendary star of Forbidden Planet, Airplane!, Police Squad!, Creepshow, Ransom, the Naked Gun trilogy, and Spy Hard, which Al supplied with a memorable theme song

Patton Oswalt: King of Queens and Comedians of Comedy star, who also appeared on the first episode of The Weird Al Show

Emo Philips: stand-up icon who appeared in UHF and the "It's All About the Pentiums" video

Brian Posehn: star of Just Shoot Me!, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, and The Comedians of Comedy

The Presidents of the United States of America, whose hit "Lump" was parodied as Al's 1996 hit "Gump"

Select members of the cast and crew of SpongeBob SquarePants, including veteran voice artist and character actor Rodger Bumpass (Squidward) and Mr. Krabs performer and quirky Carnivale and Highlander star Clancy Brown

Throwing Toasters: current demented music superstars

Myf Warhurst: Australian radio and television personality and team captain on the game show Spicks and Specks, on which Al appeared in early 2007

Evan Wecksell: comedian and VH1 and E! regular

Jim West: Al's longtime guitarist

We are grateful for any and all help we receive in our cause.

Did anyone noteworthy refuse to sign?

Surprisingly, no. Sure, there were instances in which we were unable to reach or reconnect with an artist or celebrity's management, but we thankfully never received a response like "They don't like Weird Al and will not help you out. Go away."

How many signatures were eventually collected?

After extremely careful counting and reviewing of each page, a total of 9,032 individual signatures were received and sent to the Rock Hall Foundation. Wow!

When was it sent?

The complete, phone book-sized petition was sent out on April 1, 2008. It arrived at the Rock Hall Foundation approximately a week later.

How did the Rock Hall Foundation react to it?

We don't know just yet. The Rock Hall Foundation has yet to respond to any of our actions.

Will there be a petition again this year?

No, as we've pretty much exhausted any and all petition resources for a while now. We might revisit the idea of a new petition in the future, but one is not in any of our immediate plans.

50 States in 48 Weeks (2005 Project)

Was this that thing in which Al fans in every state were being asked for help?

That was a part of the larger campaign as a whole. For the end of 2004 and most of 2005 we embarked on a unique letter-writing project called "50 States in 48 Weeks." This involved a timetable in which fans in each state, and around the world for that matter, were singled out and asked to send mail to the Rock Hall Foundation during a specific, pre-determined week. One week it was Nebraska's turn, the next Hawaii's, etc.

When did this take place?

This phase of the campaign officially ran from the week of October 3, 2004 to the week of August 28, 2005.

Why was this angle approached?

First of all, after all of the touring Al has done in the last couple of decades, tours which have taken him to every part of the country, it stands to reason that there are pockets of fans in every state, every metropolitan area...heck, everywhere! By going week by week and state by state we were able to focus on specific parts of the country that may not normally have a chance to shine when it comes to Weird Al.

But also, by spreading this out over the course of forty-eight weeks, this meant that at least once a week the Rock Hall Foundation would have received a new request to induct Al. Not a week would have gone by in which Al wouldn't have a presence at the foundation. We needed to keep Weird Al on the minds of the foundation, and particularly the nominating committee, all year long, and this was the best way to help make that happen. Otherwise, they might have just received one big lump sum of postcards and letters in, say, November and that would have more or less been the end of it.

But why do this for only forty-eight weeks and not fifty?

Well, as ideal as it would have been to have such a project last for a forty-ninth and fiftieth week, unfortunately doing so would have taken us into mid-September. By then the nominating committee would have already made up its mind on whom to nominate. A postcard from, say, Mississippi would have been a moot point by then, and we simply didn't want to leave any Al fan behind. We wanted everyone to have a chance to show their support while it, hopefully, still mattered.

So, for the sake of getting everyone involved, we ended up lumping a few states and countries together, causing them to share weeks. This also helped us guarantee that each week would in fact have some mail sent out, as we were able to schedule a smaller state that might not have had a fan lined up in at the moment with one that may have been bursting with Al fans.

What were fans asked to send in the mail when their week came up?

Whatever a fan wanted to send was completely up to them, as long as it was positive and made it clear that they wanted to see Al get inducted. State-centric postcards were clearly the popular choice, but other ideas included letters, artwork, and even gifts.

What was with that map and that weird timetable thing that were on the main page?

The map detailed where our then-current letter and postcard volunteers were from (and which states they were representing). We had a nifty little color-coded system to instruct them what to do. Green-colored states were asked to send mail immediately, magenta states had volunteers lined up but had yet to be called, while white states were still without volunteers.

The timetable, meanwhile, detailed the entire mailing schedule.

Were fans who lived outside of the United States allowed to volunteer to send mail?

Absolutely. In fact, a good portion of the schedule was filled with spots for foreign fans.

How many folks ended up volunteering and in which states?

Well, giving out exact numbers and names might be a little odd, but what we can say is that we had volunteers in all fifty states, Puerto Rico, and fifteen foreign countries on four continents.

Our friends in foreign lands hailed from Australia, Canada, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.

What was the mailing schedule?

Remember, these dates were for 2004 and 2005....

Week of State Week of State Week of State
October 3 Hawaii January 23 Minnesota May 15 Alabama/UK
October 10 Nebraska January 30 Louisiana May 22 South Dakota/Malaysia
October 17 West Virginia February 6 Arizona May 29 Utah/Montana
October 24 Idaho February 13 Iowa June 5 California/France
October 31 New Hampshire February 20 Massachusetts June 12 Oklahoma/Germany
November 7 Missouri February 27 Virginia June 19 Illinois/Mexico
November 14 New Mexico March 6 Indiana June 26 North Carolina/Greece
November 21 Tennessee March 13 Nevada July 3 New York
November 28 Oregon March 20 Kentucky July 10 Colorado/Arkansas
December 5 Maine March 27 Washington July 17 Texas/South Korea
December 12 Maryland April 3 Ohio July 24 N Dakota/Fans Abroad
December 19 Florida April 10 Wisconsin July 31 Mississippi
December 26 New Jersey April 17 South Carolina August 7 Vermont
January 2 Connecticut April 24 Wyoming/Canada August 14 Rhode Island
January 9 Alaska May 1 Michigan/Netherlands August 21 Delaware
January 16 Georgia May 8 Kansas/Australia August 28 Pennsylvania

Who were the "Fans Abroad?"

Out of fear that postcards and letters sent internationally wouldn't arrive in New York by late August otherwise, it was decided to make the end of July the deadline for any and all foreign correspondence. So the week of July 24 was the last call (or the first call for those who had yet to be called up!) for all "Al Fans Abroad."

Weren't there these funny little intros for each state that was being highlighted?

At the start of each week on the World of "Weird Al" Yankovic Forums, Greg would post a humorous message to salute that week's state and/or country. Often Greg would utilize a little bit of the state's history, especially if it had a music slant to it.

The posts are all still in the forum's "Rock Hall" thread (see below for more info), and we will have an archive page of those intros here on the site at some point in the future.

That's Me in the Corner, That's Me in the Spotlight, Losing My Petition (2004)

Wait a second. Didn't you guys already do a petition?

Over the summer of 2004 we embarked on the ambitious first phase of our campaign, in which "field operatives" around the country stood outside at Al concerts and collected signatures on a petition that eventually went to the Rock Hall Foundation.

When was this done?

This phase of the campaign officially ran from July 10 to August 22.

How many cities did this petition turn up in?

The petition showed up at seventeen concerts and one comic book convention in a total of fourteen cities across the country.

The 2004 petition tour schedule is listed below.

Date City Venue Field Operative
July 10 Verona, NY Turning Stone Casino Weirdstef
July 20 Costa Mesa, CA Orange County Fair Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
stupidsurgeon27
July 21 Costa Mesa, CA Orange County Fair Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
stupidsurgeon27
July 22 Costa Mesa, CA Orange County Fair Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
stupidsurgeon27
July 23 Costa Mesa, CA Orange County Fair Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
stupidsurgeon27
July 24 Costa Mesa, CA Orange County Fair Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
stupidsurgeon27
July 25 Sacramento, CA Sacramento Convention Center
Community Center Theater
Squirrelygirl
July 27 Portland, OR Portland Center for the Performing Arts
Keller Auditorium
Driew_La_27
July 30 Oxnard, CA Oxnard Performing Arts and Convention Center Cinnamon
Squirrelygirl
July 31 Fresno, CA Fresno Convention Center
Saroyan Theatre
Cinnamon
i_love_yankovic
Squirrelygirl
August 2 Paso Robles, CA California Mid-State Fair Cinnamon
August 3 Santa Rosa, CA Luther Burbank Center for the Arts Squirrelygirl
August 8 Santa Clara, CA Paramount's Great America Squirrelygirl
August 13 Chicago, IL Wizard World Chicago Dale
August 14 Chicago, IL Wizard World Chicago Dale
August 15 Chicago, IL Wizard World Chicago Dale
August 15 Lincoln, NE University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lied Center for Performing Arts
stupidsurgeon27
August 19 Rochester Hills, MI Meadow Brook Music Festival Amphitheatre celebros27
August 20 Merrillville, IN Star Plaza Theatre kaffy©
August 22 Cincinnati, OH Paramount's Kings Island kaffy©
Shelley

Did anyone noteworthy sign the petition?

Well, every signer was noteworthy as far as we're concerned, but as far as celebrities go, actually yes! Such signers included the Knack's Doug Fieger, who granted Al permission to release his first parody single "My Bologna" and who talked Capitol Records into signing Al; record producer Jake Hooker, who wrote the Joan Jett hit "I Love Rock n' Roll," granted Al permission to release "I Love Rocky Road," and who hooked Al up with producer Rick Derringer; and pop legend Don McLean, who wrote and recorded the classic "American Pie."

There were also two signers within Al's "camp." Not only did Al's bassist Steve Jay sign it, but so did Steve's son Miles, who filled in for his dad at concerts over the summer of 2002. And although it wasn't counted toward the petition's total number of signatures, Al himself "signed" it by autographing one of the blank pages.

Did anyone noteworthy refuse to sign?

Unfortunately yes, but at least there were some varying reasons. Joan Jett's management refused to pass a page along to the rocker, as they wanted to instead concentrate on getting Joan inducted (not quite sure why they believed Al getting inducted would cancel out Joan's chances, though...paranoia, perhaps?). "MacArthur Park" composer Jimmy Webb was right in the middle of finishing up a new album when we approached him, but he did at the very least wish us well.

How many signatures were eventually collected?

Well, a total of 2,978 individual signatures were sent to the Rock Hall Foundation, after each and every page was meticulous reviewed to remove the few bogus names and the like. But since a number of pages were accidentally destroyed before being collected, it is believed that the total collected number actually hovered somewhere around 3,200 signatures. Either way, that's still pretty freakin' impressive for just six weeks!

When was it sent?

The complete, several-hundred-paged petition was sent out on September 10, 2004. The 2005 nominees were announced shortly afterward, but alas Al didn't make the cut.

Miscellaneous Questions

I read an article about you guys, and some quotes were being attributed to someone named Gordon. Who's that?

That article wasn't supposed to be talking to him, but Gordon does a lot of the behind the scenes work for the campaign. He prefers to remain low key about his involvement, but since people have been asking, we may be revealing a little about him in the future.

Is this that thing with fans trying to get Al a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame?

No. You're referring to another fan-based campaign, the Weird Al Star Fund, which is currently raising $25,000 to sponsor a hopeful star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Al.

Do I need to send money for this campaign?

No. All we ask that you sacrifice are your time, your stationary, and a stamp. We will not ask for or accept any monetary donations.

But if you would like to help spread the word about the campaign on the back of your car or on your lapel, we are offering a variety of inexpensive campaign gear at our Cafepress store.

Can I buy Make the Rock Hall "Weird" stuff anywhere?

As previously stated, we are offering a couple of small campaign items such as bumper stickers, buttons, and other nick-nacks at our Cafepress store.

On January 18, 2007, we debuted our extremely popular "Yankovic '08" store, offering tongue-in-cheek election-themed goodies.

Just one month later, on February 16, 2007, we announced the release of our 2007 petition tour shirt. Produced in conjunction with the Weird Al Star Fund, with all proceeds going to that campaign, the shirts were fully licensed from Al's management and feature Al cartoon art from our 2005 art contest finalists.

Are you guys on MySpace?

Yep! On July 9, 2006, to commemorate the campaign's second anniversary, we launched an official Make the Rock Hall "Weird" MySpace page.

Has there ever been a grassroots campaign for Weird Al before?

There are always efforts going on to get Al more exposure and more honors. In addition to the Weird Al Star Fund, there has also been an online drive to get Al nominated for an MTV Video Vanguard Award.

And of course we have to mention Make the Rock Hall "Weird's" predecessors here at All Things Yankovic: We Want It ALL On UHF, the successful letter-writing campaign that prompted MGM to release a "special edition" DVD of Al's UHF in 2002, and We Want The Weird Al Show, which helped persuade Shout! Factory to release Al's cult Saturday morning series on DVD in 2006.

What's this I hear about someone showing UHF for this?

On March 19, 2005, the Case Western Reserve University Film Society in Cleveland screened Al's cult classic UHF. Representatives from Make the Rock Hall "Weird," including Greg, were on hand to promote the campaign.

On September 26, 2006, the campaign was also on-hand at the Virgin Megastore in Hollywood while Al was there for an in-store signing to promote his latest album, Straight Outta Lynwood.

We're always looking for Al-related events to cross-promote the campaign with, so by all means if you are planning or know of something coming up, please let us know!

I am a member of the press. Where do I go?

Have no fear. We have a page all set up for you.

Are you going to contact celebrities to help out, such as those whom Al has parodied?

We're certainly trying our best to. Sometimes it's easy to get a hold of an artist's management, while sometimes it's also very, very hard.

I know someone who might want to help. What do I do?

If you're speaking of friends, family, and the like, then please direct them to the web site. We cannot stress the importance of spreading the word around about this. You'd be surprised who may turn out to be a Weird Al fan.

If you're instead speaking of someone such as a celebrity, such as one whose one personal letter might make a world of difference, then please contact us beforehand so we can strategize and provide you with materials to pass along.

I have an idea. Whom do I bug?

Why, you just need to send us an e-mail!

Is there an official message board or chat room to discuss the campaign?

Nope, but there is a sorta unofficial official Rock Hall thread in the "General Chat" section of the World of "Weird Al" Yankovic Forums. This is where a lot of the brainstorming and planning take place, so if you are interested in contributing more than you're asked to, this would be the place to start.

Please note that you must register to the forums first, and we ask that you respect the rules and regulations there should you decide to join.

And in the End....

Are there enough of us fans to pull this off?

You betcha! In October 2003 the Cleveland Plain Dealer, as in the museum's own hometown paper, asked readers to take an informal online poll to find out who they wanted to see inducted into the Rock Hall. Though Al wasn't even eligible yet, fans flooded the poll with write-in votes for Al. Our efforts even warranted a special mention in the article listing the results.

Granted that's just one online poll for one newspaper, but what if that kind of spirit and drive was mobilized in other cities with other Al fans? And what if instead of an online poll all these fans simply had to send a letter to just one address?

And if one ever needed further indication of just how strong Al's fan base is, noodle this: In May 2003, without a music video or much mass media promotion at all, Al was still able to get his first ever top twenty album debut in Billboard. Al then was able to top that very achievement in September 2006 by getting his first ever top ten debut. If fans are able to pull off that kind of support, then they can do anything.

Seriously now--no hype, no spin, no delusions--can we do this? Can we actually get Weird Al inducted?

There is simply no way to answer this, mainly because none of us can predict the future with any degree of accuracy.

Do we want to get Al inducted? Do we want to do everything in our power to help make that happen? Are we willing to sacrifice our time and energy to write to the people who can make that happen? Are we willing to recruit our friends and relatives to pitch in? Are we really willing to go that extra mile in order to show our support for Al?

The only definite answer is that it all depends on us.


Go back to the main Rock Hall page!