(L-R): People gather near a memorial for Michael Jackson on the front lawn of Hitsville U.S.A., the Motown Museum in Detroit, on Saturday, June 27, 2009. ; Tip ‘T.I.’ Harris attends the premiere of Disney And Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man And The Wasp’ on June 25, 2018 in Hollywood, California.
Photo: John T. Greilick (AP Photo/The Detroit News), Rich Fury (Getty Images)

From Hitsville to the Rubberband Man!

The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) will be hosting its 32nd Annual Rhythm & Soul Awards this summer and both Detroit and Atlanta have hometown honorees to celebrate.

In honor of its 60th anniversary, Motown Records will be presented with the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Heritage Award, awarded to those who have had a major impact within the music genre of Rhythm and Soul.

“From its humble beginnings to its reputation as the birthplace of soul, funk and R&B, Motown Records has evolved into a legendary institution that is home to some of the greatest musical talents of the last century,” ASCAP Chairman of the Board and President Paul Williams said of the record label founded by Berry Gordy, in a press release. “We are so pleased to celebrate Motown Records’ first 60 years with the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Heritage Award.”

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Previous winners of the award include Smokey Robinson, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Chaka Khan, Peabo Bryson, Earth, Wind & Fire, Rick James, and Bill Withers. Motown’s individual artists, such as Smokey and Rick have won the award, and now the entire conglomerate will be honored. To celebrate, Motown artists will take the stage at the award ceremony for a special performance. Um, sign me up!

Additionally, the membership-based music organization is debuting its inaugural ASCAP Voice of the Culture Award to T.I.! The award will be given to ASCAP songwriters and artists who have had a major influence on music and culture.

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“T.I. has conquered the worlds of music, TV and film, helping to popularize a new sub-genre of music in the process,” Williams added. “His significant contributions to hip-hop music, support for other artists through his record label, philanthropy, community activism and memorable onscreen roles have had a profound impact on today’s music and culture. There is no one more deserving to receive the inaugural ASCAP Voice of the Culture Award.”

Again, I need to be in the building, if only to hear T.I.’s loquacious acceptance speech.

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The 32nd Annual ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards will take place Thursday, June 20, 2019, in Los Angeles.