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Punks, piano player, politician join Hall of Fame

Oregonians who influenced music world to be feted Oct. 5 at Aladdin Theater


by: COURTESY OF CHRIS BOTTI - Grammy-winning trumpet player Chris Botti, who was raised in Corvallis and attended Mt. Hood Community College, leads a class of inductees into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame.Jerry A., vocalist for hardcore punk rockers Poison Idea, is as shocked as anyone that his band will soon belong to the Oregon Music Hall of Fame.

“I guess if you stick around long enough anything can happen,” says A., who notes at least one band member — the famed guitarist Tom “Pig Champion” Roberts — has died, and was among almost 60 musicians to have played in Poison Idea.

When asked with what particular lineup he’ll be inducted, A. chuckles.

“Maybe we’ll pick somebody from the band who hasn’t even been in the band yet, but will be in the future,” he says.

Hall of Fame organizers note Poison Idea, which formed in 1980, was selected, in part, for their influence on countless bands, including Nirvana and Pantera. Poison Idea’s energetic riffs actually served a practical purpose, A. says. Early Portland crowds weren’t always fans of the band’s hardcore music.

“We could get done faster and get out of there quicker,” he says with a laugh. “Even hippies can be violent when they want something.”

The Oregon Music Hall of Fame’s seventh annual ceremony and concert will take place at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, at the Aladdin Theater, 3017 S.E. Milwaukie Ave. Proceeds benefit school music programs. Tony Starlight will emcee the show, and Portland’s Kingsmen, who are celebrating the 50th anniversary of their hit, “Louie Louie,” will perform. Other performers include Quarterflash, as well as Americana band Richmond Fontaine, one of this year’s inductees.

Willy Vlautin from Richmond Fontaine notes Oregon had a huge influence on his music.

“The weather influenced my writing, that’s for sure,” Vlautin says. “But more than anything I think (fellow Hall of Famers) Dead Moon influenced me the most. Their raw garage rock feel, the darkness and desperation of the songs.”

Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. VIP tickets, which include prime seating and other amenities, are $100. Tickets are available at ticketfly.com and at the Aladdin box office.

For more information, visit www.omhof.org.

In addition to Poison Idea and Richmond Fontaine, the following artists have been

inducted as well:

Chris Botti

The world’s biggest-selling jazz instrumentalist, the Corvallis-raised Botti, who attended Mt. Hood Community College, has played with Frank Sinatra, Sting, Paul Simon and others. He’s had four No. 1 albums and this year won a Grammy in the Best Pop Instrumental Album category for “Impressions.”

Hazel

This Portland band formed in 1992 with Pete Krebs, Jody Bleyle and Brady Smith, along with dancer Fred Nemo, and made a big impact on the alternative rock scene.

“The music scene we came out of was very localized and very unique, and certainly influenced the way we went about writing our music and presenting it,” Krebs says.

Despite his ongoing battle with cancer, Krebs still regularly plays with the Stolen Sweets, the Portland Playboys and other outfits.

Kelly Joe Phelps

Phelps has released 11 albums showcasing his bluesy, jazzy roots music, including his critically acclaimed 2012 release “Brother Sinner & the Whale.” Such artists as Townes Van Zandt, Tony Furtado, Greg Brown and Jay Farrar have featured his playing on their records.

by: COURTESY OF JANICE SCROGGINS - Both Oregon Music Hall of Fame inductees, Janice Scroggins and her piano have played alongside other Portland greats, while band Hazel made an impact on the alternative rock scene.

Janice Scroggins

Scroggins is the go-to-piano-player for many blues and gospel musicians here, and her solo album “Janice Plays Scott Joplin” earned a Grammy nomination. She’s played with Obo Addy, Norman Sylvester, Lloyd Jones, Thara Memory and Linda Hornbuckle. Scroggins says playing here has allowed her to tickle the ivories for a wide variety of musicians.

“It’s just been wonderfully eclectic for all these years I’ve played, and it’s a wonderful place to come up with different ideas.”

Gregg Williams

Owner of Trench Studio in Portland, Williams has played drums on, produced or engineered scores of albums. He’s recorded with and/or toured with Quarterflash, Sheryl Crow, The Dandy Warhols, Blitzen Trapper, Nu Shooz and Emmylou Harris.

Bud Clark

Portland’s former Mayor Clark sanctioned eight Mayor’s Balls from 1985 to 1992, which showcased dozens of Oregon artists.

“His contributions and support of the musical arts in Portland during his eight years in office was (above) and beyond anyone who has served as Mayor of Portland,” the Hall of Fame says.

As for Clark, he doesn’t get why the hall wants him.

“They are crazy!” he says. “I know nothing about music, and I have no talent. I just enjoy it.”

Marty Hughley

Hughley started his career at Music Millennium (owned by Hall of Fame President Terry Currier) in the early 1980s. In the mid-80s he wrote for Willamette Week, eventually being named music editor. In 1990, he became a music critic at The Oregonian, a position he held for more than 16 years, before writing about theater and dance.

In addition to the inductees, the Hall of Fame will give “Album of the Year” honors to bluesman Curtis Salgado for “Soul Shot,” his first solo album on Alligator Records, and has named jazz musician Esperanza Spalding “Artist of the Year” for her album “Radio Music Society,” which hit No. 10 on the Billboard Pop Charts, as well as No. 1 on the Billboard Jazz Charts.