June 13, 2002 @ Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers, Imperial Ballroom
The National Academy of Popular Music/Songwriters Hall of Fame, the organization dedicated to recognizing the work and lives of those composers and lyricists who create popular music around the world, returns for its highly anticipated 33nd annual induction and awards dinner, scheduled for Thursday, June 13 at the Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers. At a kick-off event in New York City, Songwriters Hall of Fame Chairman/CEO Hal David announced this year's inductees, which include Sting, Michael Jackson, Randy Newman, Barry Manilow and Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson.
"The Songwriters Hall of Fame Awards & Dinner is so important because it's a time when some of the premier songwriters in the world come together to honor their own," commented Hal David. "That kind of camaraderie creates a very special night and we’re looking forward to another great event this year."
At each kick-off event for the Songwriters Hall of Fame, gifted and promising songwriters are awarded a scholarship called the Abe Olman Publisher's Award for Excellence in Songwriting, named for one of the founding members. This year's winners and songwriters to watch include Johnny Rodgers, John Stephens, Elizabeth Jordan, Colin Brooks and Lee Kweller.
The stars came out to honor each other at last year's event, with Dolly Parton, songwriter Diane Warren, Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton , singer/songwriter Paul Williams, Billy Joel (the Johnny Mercer Award), Gloria & Emilio Estefan (the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award), Dionne Warwick (the Hitmaker Award), Ralph Peer and Iris Cantor (Patron of the Arts Award) being honored. Rob Thomas, Dave Matthews, Clive Davis, Paul Shaffer, Elvis Costello, Judy Collins, Jimmy Webb, Emmylou Harris , Deborah Cox, Marc Anthony, Maria Elena Holly (Buddy Holly's widow), Blu Cantrell, Richard Belzer, Tony Randall, Jon Secada, and even Kermit the Frog came out to present or perform for their peers. A highlight of the evening was the grand finale of "Not Fade Away," where all of the artists came back onstage to perform the song together.
The National Academy of Popular Music/Songwriters Hall of Fame was founded in 1969 by songwriter Johnny Mercer and publishers Abe Olman and Howie Richmond. The NAPM/SHOF is also devoted to the development of new songwriting talent through workshops, showcases and scholarships.
Over the course of the past 32 years, some key Songwriters Hall of Fame inductees have included Burt Bachrach, Jim Croce, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, Sir Elton John, Bernie Taupin, Stevie Wonder, Brian Wilson, James Taylor, James Brown and Curtis Mayfield, among many, many others.