The Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame has announced the list of nominees to be inducted into the 2009 class.

The nominees will be paired down to a final five after being considered by a panel of some 500 musicians, journalists and record industry professionals and revealed in January of next year. They will then be officially inducted on April 4, 2009 in the Rock Hall’s annual ceremony.

The 2009 nominees are Metallica, Iggy And The Stooges, Run-DMC, Jeff Beck, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Wanda Jackson, Bobby Womack and the bands War and Chic.

Of those named on the list, Metallica would seem to be something of a lock considering the band’s status as trailblazers of the modern speed metal and thrash genres. Run-DMC’s chances of making the cut are also probably pretty good, as the group probably did more to merge the styles of rap and rock than anyone before them on such records as “King Of Rock,” “Rock Box,” and especially their version of “Walk This Way” with Aerosmith.

My best guess as to who fills the remaining three slots would be the Stooges, Jeff Beck, and Chic. The Stooges are rightfully considered godfathers of punk rock, and Iggy has the battle stripes to prove his iconic status. Jeff Beck, along with Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page more or less invented the whole idea of the modern guitar hero. Chic’s disco hits “Good Times” and “Le Freak” were among the few high points of the otherwise disposable music of the seventies disco era, and Nile Rodgers went on to become a great producer in his own right.

Little Anthony and the Imperials, Wanda Jackson, Bobby Womack and War are all great artists in their own right, but would have to be considered long shots for this year’s class. Maybe next year.

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