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Sabbath, others enter rock hall

NEW YORK -- After snubs that drove Black Sabbath lead singer Ozzy Osbourne to dismiss the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame vote as ''totally irrelevant," the heavy-metal pioneers are finally in, joined by Miles Davis, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Sex Pistols, and Blondie.

Ozzy's '70s group was first nominated in 1996. But until yesterday, the panel of musicians, industry professionals, and journalists who vote on inductees kept the door barred. Except for Led Zeppelin, the hall has largely ignored metal since the organization was founded in 1987.

In 1999, Osbourne requested that Black Sabbath be taken off the list of nominees.

''The nomination is meaningless, because it's not voted on by the fans," Osbourne said at the time. ''It's voted on by the supposed elite of the industry and the media, who've never bought an album or concert ticket in their lives, so their vote is totally irrelevant to me."

Osbourne had no immediate reaction to the induction.

Davis, the late trumpeter, is the first jazz musician accepted as a full inductee. Louis Armstrong (1990), Dinah Washington (1993), and Billie Holiday (2000) were previously honored as being early influences on rock 'n' roll.

Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss, who founded A&M records in 1962, will receive a lifetime achievement award in the non-performer category.

This year's class will be inducted on March 13 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York.

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