Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Donovan comments on Rock Hall induction

Scottish folk hero Donovan has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame.

The singer/songwriter joins Guns N’ Roses, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Beastie Boys, The Small Faces/The Faces and Laura Nyro in the Class of 2012.

Donovan’s music has always defied simple description, since it combined so many elements of different genres like folk, pop, rock, jazz and psychedelia.

Certainly, Donovan’s most easily referenced songs are his 1966 smash, “Sunshine Superman,” referred to as one of the first overtly psychedelic records, as well as “Mellow Yellow,” which followed in the same year. But there were other hits, including a UK #1 for “The Universal Soldier” (1965) and 1968’s “Hurdy Gurdy Man.”

Rolling Stone caught up with Donovan on Wednesday, on vacation in Monaco, to get his thoughts on the Hall Of Fame news.

“It's a singular honor, and I'm pleased as punch, as they say in England and Scotland,” began Donovan. “It's even more special because I'm going to be there with some of my favorite artists and musicians. The Faces are my old chums. We used to hang out. The Chilis, some of them appeared on my Rick Rubin album. Guns N' Roses, who I've come to know in California and did a couple of things with. Of course, the Beastie Boys. A very touching part of this, for me, is the inclusion of the lovely Laura Nyro, who left us too soon, of course. When I was younger, I followed her rise and her extraordinary work. It will be great to see her honored too.”

“Honors and awards are very interesting, and I truly accept them,” he continued. “I have very high regard for what they mean. What they mean is that they're pointing to the work. For me, the work was always to show others, to lead others, to experiment, to break all the rules. I've had lots of recognition, and interestingly enough, within the past year, from the Mojo award that Jimmy Page gave me to the Lifetime Achievement Award that the BBC gave me for the folk world.”

“But this one is singular. It is worldwide, and it's very interesting because the other ones were quite local. So, no, I don't feel that I should have had it earlier. Also, I understand that the voting committee is composed of musicians and performers and singer/songwriters. That is also wonderful. It is similar to the Academy Awards where actual makers of films give their vote. They are voting on a very special level. It is great to be honored by one's peers. There are so many people to choose from by the voting committee. It is very, very difficult for them, I'm sure.”

Read more of Donovan’s comments at Rolling Stone here.

Donovan Donovan

Donovan – Sunshine Superman (1966)

See also:

VIDEO: Jimmy Page rocks London with Donovan