Best Icebreaker: Chris Martin on Peter Gabriel
When Chris Martin took the stage after Gabriel and his band's opening performance of "Digging in the Dirt," he relayed to the crowd some of his mother's advice: When you're nervous, always look for a passage from the Bible. Martin’s crowd-pleasing reading, however, turned out to be a hilarious version of the "Book of Genesis," where Gabriel was in conversation with a wise drummer named Phil the Collins. When he moved on to the proper speech, the Coldplay singer recalled a day he spent in Paris with only Gabriel's music to keep him company and even nodded to the new inductee's dancing, claiming that Gabriel pioneered "the school of English Unchoreographed," a style that singers like he and Thom Yorke still practice. "He helped John Cusack get his girlfriend back in Say Anything," he announced. "He repopularized the goatee." It was surprisingly entertaning way to kick off what became a long night of speeches.