Prince may be enthroned. ''The Pretender'' singer Jackson Browne is a contender. George Harrison may be elected for the second time. And a win for John Mellencamp would hurt so good. All four are first-time nominees on the ballot mailed last week to voting members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Associated Press reports.
To be eligible for the class of 2004, musicians must have released their first album before 1979. This was the first year that Prince and the artist formerly known as John Cougar were eligible. Harrison, already a Rock Hall inductee as a member of the Beatles, was nominated for his solo career; fellow Fab Four members John Lennon and Paul McCartney have similarly been inducted twice. (What's Ringo, chopped liver?).
Nominated again this year are several acts who've made the ballot before, including the Sex Pistols, Black Sabbath, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Patti Smith, Gram Parsons, Bob Seger, the Stooges, Traffic, '50s acts the Dells and the ''5'' Royales, and ZZ Top. An announcement of the winners is expected in December, with the annual induction dinner/jam session following in early 2004.