This year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has a distinctly 1970s flavor -- with the announcement that the Ramones, Talking Heads, Isaac Hayes and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers will be inducted into the hall in Cleveland in March. The selections also reflect the diversity of rock 'n' roll, with the Ramones representing punk, Talking Heads standing for electronic and world music, Hayes bringing on the funk and Petty dishing out fairly straight-ahead rock. The new class of Hall-of-Famers also includes '60s hit makers Brenda Lee and Gene Pitney. The late guitar virtuoso and super producer Chet Atkins was named in the "sidemen" category, and Stax Records co-founder Jim Stewart was named to the hall in the nonperformer group. The 17th annual induction ceremony is scheduled for March 18 in New York. It will be telecast on a tape delay basis on VH1.
PAUL DETAILS LAST MOMENTS WITH GEORGE
Paul McCartney says his final moments with George Harrison were "the best thing for me" -- especially the part where the former Beatle band mates held hands. McCartney told a BBC Radio interviewer that when he visited Harrison two weeks before the Beatles lead guitarist died, he "spent a couple of hours ... laughing and joking and holding his hand." It was only after the visit, said Sir Paul that he realized that in all the time they'd known each other, he had never held Harrison's hand. "He was rubbing his thumb up and down my hand," said McCartney, "and it was very nice."
ON THE OTHER HAND
Members of Nirvana who are suing Courtney Love for control of the company that manages the business affairs of her late husband -- and former Nirvana frontman -- Kurt Cobain, accuse Love of being motivated by "self-interest" and an "obsessive need for publicity and attention." Cobain committed suicide in 1994, following a long struggle with substance abuse and depression. His former band mates, Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl, filed suit against Love this week. They also released an open letter to Nirvana fans blaming Love for holding up the release of a Nirvana boxed-set to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the release of the band's first big hit album, "Nevermind." They write: "This project had been in the works for nearly five years. But this collection never came out. And there is only one reason: Courtney Love." She sued Novoselic and Grohl earlier this year to gain sole control of Nirvana LLC -- saying that she should control the company because Cobain had been the sole artistic force of Nirvana.
MADONNA SLAMS LONDON WORK ETHIC
Madonna is not likely to make many friends among the working class in London with her remarks recently during an msn.com live chat. "I can't believe how people don't like to work," she said. "I'm renovating a house right now and the work week starts at noon on Monday and ends at noon on Friday. I'm a bit spoiled. I'm used to people in America working 7 days a week. It's highly irritating. They leave work at 5 and there are bank holidays every minute here. When you hire an employee here, they remind you that they get four weeks' paid vacation." Since it was a Web chat, there was no way to tell from body language or other nonverbal cues whether the Material Girl was entirely serious in her critique, or whether she was speaking tongue-in-cheek.
BUSH WILL READ 'IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE' FOR THE BLIND
Former President George Bush will "describe" James Stewart's classic Christmas movie, "It's a Wonderful Life," for blind and visually impaired moviegoers. Bush will read descriptions which audiences can hear using TheatreVision, a technology developed by Retinitis Pigmentosa International. The descriptions are added to the film's sound track, typically in spaces where there is no dialogue. The TheatreVision version of the movie is scheduled to premiere Sunday at Universal Studios Hollywood. It is scheduled to tour the United States next year.
UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 225
For the past three weeks I've been taking Fridays off, turning over the news portion of this column to United Press International's Pat Nason in Los Angeles. I have been doing so to take advantage of some unused "personal" days. Which leads me to today's question. Many companies have different rules about the use of "personal," "sick" and "vacation" days. Some allow days to be held over from year to year. Others don't. So: "How do things work at your place of business as far as leave goes? Do you lose it if you don't use it? What have been your experiences?" Put LEAVE in the subject line and send to firstname.lastname@example.org via the Internet.
RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 215 (MOVE)
Due to last week's computer problems, we received no replies to our question on HOROSCOPES. So let's catch up on another question, whether you have any plans of moving in the future. Here are some of your replies: Kathy says she's thinking of moving to a larger house down the street. There's a hitch, though, her kids aren't thrilled with the idea. Well, Kathy, if you can afford two mortgages, you can use Netmeeting and see the kids on cam from time to time, or ask the postman how they are. LMandy lives in a three-bedroom, three-story house that has become unmanageable and would like to move to a one-story house. AntiM777 says "NO, I live in the house I grew up in. I'm 47 and I've lived in England ... but North Carolina is home and I love it here." Len is moving somewhere else. He just got laid off and says it won't be easy. Several just answered "Yes" with no explanation. More than a third of respondents agreed with AntiM777 and are staying put. Darolyn, in Dallas, says she is moving to a neighboring city and is thrilled. Darolyn, are you moving to Richardson by chance? Cyndy says she's moved twice in less than 10 months and is among those staying put " ... until they bury me!" Nigel, our friend from Down Under, has moved 14 times in the 15 years since getting married. Nigel, I would ask whether it happened each time the lease was up, but I won't. He and his wife are now happy in their new rural digs " ... away from the urban sprawl." GBA.