Following an introduction from Iggy Pop, the frontman opened by acknowledging the surreal nature of this year’s virtual event. He said when he found out Nine Inch Nails had been selected for the class of 2020, the thing he was most looking forward to was getting together with bandmates past and present at the ceremony. Now, he added, “We’re all stuck in our little boxes staring at our screens.”
Reznor went on to talk about what being an artist means to him and what keeps him motivated as a creative. He also thanked the various musicians who have been a part of Nine Inch Nails over the years, as well as their outside collaborators and industry peers. He closed by thanking his family and the band’s rabid fans, quipping, “You’re an intense bunch that can drive me out of my mind — but you’re the best.”
In closing, Reznor said: “This journey’s far from over if I have any say in it, so let’s stop fucking around, patting ourselves on the back, and get to it. Hope to see you all in the flesh soon.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony was postponed this spring and reconfigured as a virtual event with no live performances. Other inductees this year include Depeche Mode, the Doobie Brothers, Whitney Houston, the Notorious B.I.G., and T. Rex, plus Ahmet Ertegun Award winners Jon Landau and Irving Azoff.
Read Reznor’s full speech on behalf of Nine Inch Nails below:
Thank you so much, Iggy.
Hello everyone, what a disorienting, strange year we find ourselves in. As I’ve been wrapping my head around Nine Inch Nails being welcomed into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I think I was most looking forward to the ceremony itself, where hopefully the whole camp, past and present, was going to get together and have a moment. And we’re all stuck in our little boxes staring at our screens.
Even now, music’s always been the thing that keeps me going. And as an artist, I think the most significant accomplishment, or feeling, is realizing something you’ve created from a fragile and intimate place has reached out, resonated and affected someone else, possibly changing how they see the world. So, as to whatever being in a Hall of Fame means, thank you for the recognition.
With that said, this has been far from a singular endeavor. And I first want to introduce my fellow inductees: Atticus Ross, Robin Finck, Alessandro Cortini, Ilan Rubin, Danny Lohner, and Chris Vrenna. I love these guys and they have all been an integral and a central part of why we’re here. Additionally, there’s been a number of other key players involved over the years I’d like to recognize and thank, including Charlie Clouser, James Woolley, Rich Patrick, Josh Freese, Justin Meldal-Johnsen, Jerome Dillon, Aaron North, Jeff Ward, and Jeordie White.
Throughout the years I’ve benefited from a strong collection of people around me that have offered everything from encouragement to guidance to a kick in the ass when needed. These include Jimmy Iovine, John Silva, Marc Geiger, Ross Rosen, Alan Moulder, Rick Rubin, Zia Modabber, Bill Harper, David Fincher, Jerome Crooks, Steve Barnett, Jim Guerinot, and John Malm. You’re all appreciated and this is for you, too.
A special thank you to my wife Mariqueen and my kids, who keep me humble and make everything worthwhile. And for the Nine Inch Nails fans out there, you guys are the best. We’ve wound up in some weird places together, and you’re an intense bunch that can drive me out of my mind — but you’re the best.
This journey’s far from over, if I have any say in it, so let’s stop fucking around, patting ourselves on the back, and get to it. Hope to see you all in the flesh soon. Thank you.