While they aren’t the first artist from that genre to be inducted – Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Run-D.M.C. and The Beastie Boys are all Hall Of Famers – there are still people who don’t feel hip-hop belongs in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.
Anthrax‘s Scott Ian, however, isn’t among them. A true champion of heavy metal, Ian’s band Anthrax is among the “Big Four” of thrash (along with Slayer, Megadeth and Hall of Famers Metallica). His band also has a serious jones for classic rock: their new EP, Anthems, sees them covering classic rock songs by Boston, Journey, Cheap Trick, Thin Lizzy, AC/DC and Rush.
But Ian doesn’t have the bias against hip-hop that perhaps some of his peers might. “Hip-hop for me – or let’s call it ‘rap,’ that’s what I called it – from, say, 1981 to 1993, I was into that as I was into any other kind of music,” he tells Radio.com.
Indeed, Anthrax experimented with rap on their 1987 track “I’m The Man,” which was something of a novelty. A few years later, in 1991, they collaborated with Public Enemy on a thrash metal update of PE’s “Bring The Noise.” And while some cross-genre collaborations reek of marketing department experiments, this was a collaboration that was prompted by Ian.
“In 1986, ’87 and ’88, Public Enemy was my favorite band on the planet,” he said. “They changed music. [Their 1987 album] It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back, I compare that album to the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band or Guns ‘N Roses’ Appetite For Destruction or Led Zeppelin’s “IV.” It you make a list of albums that changed the world, that changed the way we hear music, that album has to be on that list…”