This week, iconic hip-hop group Public Enemy will be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, alongside classic rock acts Rush and Heart and singer-songwriter Randy Newman, among others.

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

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…”

See the full story on And check for updates on this year’s Rock & Roll Hall of Fame from tonight’s (Thursday, April 18) ceremony by going here.


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