2011 MRRL Voting Results

The Sixth Generation, a popular 1960’s regional band from Niles, Michigan, finished first in the 2011 email vote for induction into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends online hall of fame. Detroit’s Sonny Bono, one half of the famous duo of Sonny & Cher, finished second.

He was closely followed by one of the Motor City’s biggest 80’s band, The Romantics. Rounding out this year’s inductees were two more Detroit natives: Diana Ross as a solo artist, and influential female rocker Suzi Quatro.  

This year’s Honorary Inductees were Al Abrams, Motown’s director of advertising and public relations in the 60’s, and Dave Kalmbach, founder of the Great Lakes Recording Studio in Sparta, Michigan, and head of Fenton Records. The seven inductions bring the total number of Michigan Rock and Roll Legends inductees to fifty-five.

The Sixth Generation was named on the greatest number of ballots with a total of 34.9%. The band was followed by Sonny Bono with 29.3%, The Romantics at 28.3%, Diana Ross with 26.4%, and Suzi Quatro at 25.7%. As in both the 2009 and 2010 votes, 25% was used as the cut-off for induction.

Falling just short of induction was Anita Baker at 24.7%. She was followed by Marshall Crenshaw with 24.3%, Iggy Pop with 23.3%, The Contours at 22.7%, Della Reese and Frijid Pink with 21.7%, The Spinners at 21.4%, Edwin Starr at 20.7%, and Barbara Lewis, and Cub Koda with 20.4%. In all, two hundred sixty-four Michigan artists received at least one vote in the balloting which concluded at noon on June 1st.

Ten more recordings were also voted in, bringing the total of Legendary Michigan Songs to sixty. Tommy James & The Shondells’ “Hanky Panky” garnered the most votes this year; and the Niles native and his band also placed “I Think We’re Alone Now” and “Mony Mony” in the 2011 top ten. The other songs selected in this year’s balloting were: “Lonely Teardrops” by Jackie Wilson, “Baby Love” by The Supremes, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, “Get Ready” by Rare Earth, “Sock It to Me-Baby!” by Mitch Ryder and The Detroit Wheels, “I Wanna Be Your Dog” by The Stooges, and “I Can’t Help Myself” by The Four Tops.

Finishing just out of the top ten were: “Baby Please Don’t Go” by The Amboy Dukes, “Rock & Roll Holiday” by Brownsville Station, “Little Town Flirt” by Del Shannon, “Turn The Page” by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band, “A Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin, “Black Sheep” by SRC, “For Once In My Life” by Stevie Wonder, “Twins” by The Kingtones, “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” by The Temptations, and “The Tears Of A Clown” by Smokey Robinson & The Miracles. One hundred and ninety of the nominated songs received at least one vote in this year’s balloting.