124. Johnny Ace

We did not have an internal debate as to whether Johnny Ace should be inducted. We agreed that he should but as the bulk of his work predated the Rock and Roll explosion we are not sure if he is a Roots and Influences candidate instead.   The death of Johnny Ace has to be considered one of the first cautionary tales during the birth of Rock and Roll era. Ace was an R&B singer with good looks, natural talent and sold a large amount of records in the early 50’s. He lived the “Rock and Roll lifestyle” before their really was one and was found dead on Christmas prior to a gig after a failed game of Russian roulette. Ironically, he would score his biggest hit (Pledging My Love) posthumously and that song finally saw him break through to white audiences. Sadly, Ace never did see the birth of the genre that he was instrumental in helping to create.   The Bullet Points:   Eligible Since: 1980   Country of Origin: U.S.A. (Memphis, TN)   Why He Will Get In: He has the historical significance on his side.   Why He Won’t Get In: Still ignored after decades so why induct him now?   Nominated In: 1986 and 1987 Class   Essential Album: The Complete Duke Recordings (2004)   Our Five Favorite Songs as Chosen by Each Member of the NIHOF Committee: Cross My Heart (Single, 1953) Midnight Hours Journey (Single, 1954) Please Forgive Me (Single, 1954) Never Let Me Go (Single, 1954) Pledging My Love (Single, 1955)   www.home.earthlink.net/~jaymar41/jace.html (Tribute Site) {acepolls 94}

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