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Austin rocker's hall of fame induction an 'incredible night'

Peter Mongillo, Music Source

Staff Writer
Austin 360

Ian McLagan's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Saturday might have been a bit overshadowed by the drama surrounding Guns N' Roses lead singer Axl Rose's refusal to reunite with his former bandmates, but that didn't stop McLagan from having a good time.

The Austin resident was inducted for his role as the keyboardist for the Small Faces and Faces, which were added to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame together. Although there was initially some disappointment about the two groups being lumped together, McLagan sounded tired but happy when he spoke Monday about the ceremony: "It was an incredible night. We were sitting next to George Clinton; he was so great," he said.

McLagan's bands had a bit of a lead singer problem, as well, as former Faces singer Rod Stewart canceled his appearance because of illness. Simply Red singer Mike Hucknall, who has played with a reunited Faces in recent years, stepped in for Stewart, joining surviving members Kenney Jones, McLagan and Ronnie Wood. "We carried on regardless," McLagan said. "Mike Hucknall flew in from England, bless his heart; he saved the day."

E Street Band guitarist Steven Van Zandt inducted the two groups, honoring late Small Faces member Ronnie Lane and Steve Marriot. "We started off with (Small Faces song) ‘All or Nothing' because we were honoring Ronnie and Steve," McLagan said. "As much as anything, this was their moment because they're both gone, and we had to do a Small Faces song that they wrote."

The group also played Faces' hits "Ooh La La" and "Stay With Me." "The place went mad when Ronnie started ‘Stay With Me,' " McLagan said.

As for Guns N' Roses? The band went on without Rose. "He didn't want to accept. He didn't want them to play. It's not about him; it's about the band, and they played really well," McLagan said.