Art & Entertainment, Feature Story

Jermaine Dupri, Kool & The Gang, Allee Willis and More Inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame

Last night, some of music’s legendary singers and songwriters were honored at the 2018 Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner. The annual event took place in New York City at the Marquis Hotel. The Songwriters Hall of Fame (SHOF) President/CEO Linda Moran and co-chairs Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff celebrated and recognized music artists who were inducted into the SHOF.

Here’s a list of the inductees:

Bill Anderson,

Steve Dorff,

Jermaine Dupri,

Alan Jackson,

Robert“Kool” Bell, Ronald Bell, George Brown & James “JT” Taylor p/k/a “Kool & The Gang,”

John Mellencamp

and Detroit’s own Allee Willis!

Allee Willis
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: Songwriters Hall of Fame Inductee Allee Willis poses with her award backstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

The night kicked off with actor and singer Brandon Victor Dixon (The Color Purple) performing two of Allee Willis’ hits “Neutron Dance” (The Pointer Sisters) and “September” (Earth, Wind, and Fire). Dixon then inducted Allee Willis into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Cool fact about Allee Willis: she also wrote the hit song “I’ll Be There For You” (The Rembrandts). You may recognize it as the theme song to 90s TV show Friends!

Allee Willis and Brandon Victor Dixon
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: Songwriters Hall of Fame Inductee Allee Willis and Brandon Victor Dixon pose backstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

 

Jermaine Dupri Second Rapper Inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame

NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: Songwriters Hall of Fame Inductee Jermaine Dupri speaks onstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

Usher, Mariah Carey, and Chad Elliott took to the stage to induct their friend, Jermaine Dupri. He is the second rapper to be inducted in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Jay Z made history last year as the first rapper inducted into the SOHF.

On being inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, Jermaine Dupri said:

“It’s a win for any kid who believes he can do it…even when people tell you no.”

Mariah Carey; Jermaine Dupri; Usher Raymond
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: (L-R) Mariah Carey, Jermaine Dupri, and Usher Raymond pose backstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

 

Special Award Recipients at the SOHF 49th annual induction and awards dinner:

Neil Diamond — prestigious Johnny Mercer Award

Sara Bareilles — Hal David Starlight Award

Sir Lucian Grainge — Howie Richmond Hitmaker Award

 

Presenters & Performers:

Leon Bridges 

Mariah Carey

Stephen Dorff

Brandon Victor Dixon

Chad Elliott 

Fantasia

Kenneth Gamble 

Leon Huff

Bob Gaudio 

Ariana Grande

Nora Guthrie

Jason Mraz

Keith Stegall

Usher

Steve Wariner

The Weeknd

Fantasia
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: Recording artist Fantasia performs onstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame )


According to a SHOF news release, Fantasia performed an electrifying rendition of “I Just Fall In Love” before actor Stephen Dorff inducted his father, Steve Dorff into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

While gospel and soul singer Leon Bridges performed an exhilarating rendition of “Get Down On It” before inducting Robert “Kool” Bell, Ronald Bell, George Brown & James “JT” Taylor p/k/a “Kool & The Gang” into the SHOF.

On honoring Kool & The Gang, Leon Bridges said:

“Through music [they have] made a celebration that has lasted 50 years.”

Kool & The Gang performed their timeless song, “Celebration,” together for the first time in 25 years, which brought the audience to its feet, dancing and singing along.

Leon Bridges
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: Recording artist Leon Bridges performs onstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)
James Taylor, Ronald Bell, Dennis Thomas
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 14: James “JT” Taylor, Ronald Bell, and Dennis Thomas of Kool & The Gang perform onstage during the Songwriters Hall of Fame 49th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14, 2018, in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

 

Congratulations to all of the inductees and artists who received special awards. Get all of the details about the event and the Songwriters Hall of Fame here!

 

Also, check out: Lenny Kravitz on Race, God, and Spreading Love Through Music and Gwen Stefani: Just A Girl About to Take Over Las Vegas.

 

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