The acts are all on the shortlist to be inducted to the Hall of Fame in April next year, one of the most highly regarded accolades a group or singer from any genre can achieve.
Acts are eligible for entry 25 years from the release of their first single, and picking up their first nominations this year are Heart, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Eric B. and Rakim, the Spinners, the Small Faces/Faces, Freddy King, Guns N' Roses, the Cure, and funk band Rufus, which launched the career of Chaka Khan.
Receiving repeat nominations are Beastie Boys, Laura Nyro, War, Donovan and Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Joel Peresman, President and CEO of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Foundation said: "The 2012 Nominees embody the broad scope of what `rock 'n' roll' means.
"From vocal groups to hip-hop, from singer-songwriters to hard rocking artists, this group represents the spirit of what we celebrate at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame."
The induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has notoriously seen bands put their differences aside to appear together at the induction - including Van Halen, Talking Heads, Cream and The Police - leading to speculation that if Guns N' Roses are welcomed, it could signal the end of the long running feud between singer Axl Rose and guitarist Slash.
Speaking of the possibility last year, Slash said: "I have no idea how that's supposed to go. If Axl, [bassist] Duff, [guitarist] Izzy and myself start communicating, it could go one way. It we don't, God knows."