Listen to Austin 360 Radio

The Go-Go's (with Austin's Kathy Valentine) are finally Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame nominees

On Wednesday, the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of fame announced its 2021 class of nominees. Notable names on the list include Jay-Z, Foo Fighters, Mary J. Blige, Iron Maiden and Tina Turner. And the Go-Go's, the most successful all-female rock band of all time, finally received their first nomination, 15 years after they first became eligible. 

The Go-Go's backstage during the video shoot for "Vacation." Kathy Valentine wrote the song to play with her first L.A. band, the Textones. It later became a hit single and the title track to the Go-Go's second album.

Austin's Kathy Valentine, the group's bassist during their heyday, called it "wonderful news" on Twitter. 

More:Austin’s Kathy Valentine on the punk-pop history of the Go-Go’s

"The Go-Go’s are the real thing straight from the clubs of LA all the way to the top, self taught and propelled," she wrote. 

In 1981, “Beauty and the Beat,” the band's boisterous debut, hit the top of the Billboard charts, where it would remain for six consecutive weeks. It was a historic achievement. The group represented the first all-female band who wrote all their own songs and played their own instruments to claim the top position. 

Finding that success didn't come easy for the young group of rockers. In 1980, they were a hot club act in L.A., but with no template for successful female rock outfits, they struggled to find a record label willing to take a chance on an all-female band. When they finally signed with the indie imprint IRS Records and recorded their classic collection of pop-rock earworms, the male-dominated music industry was still slow to sign on.

Related:Bevis Griffin celebrates Black History Month with flashy tales of Austin's glam-rock past

They went on tour, packing clubs across the country with their exuberant stage shows, but radio airplay remained elusive. 

“It was a very interesting phenomena, because we were on the road traveling around city to city, and every city, the big radio station would want us to come," Valentine told the Statesman in a 2020 interview. "They would want us to do an interview. They would want us to do their station IDs and meet all the people and sign things. But then we'd leave expecting, you know, quid pro quo that we get added to the playlist, and it wouldn't happen.”

It was the brand new Music Television Network (MTV) that eventually broke the band. They went on to become a chart-topping international phenomenon, packing arenas around the world. 

The excellent 2020 Showtime documentary, "The Go-Go's," emphasized the band's ongoing Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame omission, inspiring editorials and rallying fan outcry about the snub. 

“We did have an influence, and we did have an effect, and we did do something that had never happened before,” Valentine said in 2020, adding that she felt the band has been "overlooked a lot."

“I think it's about time that our place was a little bit more respected,” she said.

Let's hope that time has come. 

According to the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame, nominees are selected by "an international voting body of more than 1,000 artists, historians and members of the music industry." The Hall also incorporates a fan vote into its balloting process. Fans can vote online at rockhall.com through April 30. This year's inductees will be announced in May. 

UPDATE: This post has been updated to correct the year that the Go-Go's became eligible for the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.