On June 22, ASCAP celebrated our unparalleled roster of urban music giants, past and present, at the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards, presented by REVOLT. Our 30th annual Awards brought out a-list talent, including 2 Chainz, Boi-1da, Anthony Brown, French Montana, Remy Ma, Mike Will Made-It, PartyNextDoor, Yo Gotti and Young Greatness, to pick up awards for writing and publishing the biggest R&B, hip-hop and gospel songs of last year. Paul “Nineteen85” Jefferies and Allen Ritter tied for Songwriter of the Year, and Sony/ATV earned our Publisher of the Year Award. As a heat wave brought record-breaking temperatures to LA, four phenomenal performers turned it up even further: Jeremih (“Oui”), Tasha Cobbs Leonard (“Greater God”), Kyle (“iSpy” & “Nothing to Lose”) and H.E.R. (in her debut live performance).
As we honored today’s music greats, we also paid homage to three ASCAP legends who have inspired us for decades. Super-producers Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, fresh from their induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, accepted the ASCAP Voice of Music Award from the “Godfather of Black Music” Clarence Avant and Warner/Chappell Chairman & CEO and ASCAP Board member, Jon Platt. And in the most moving segment of the night, the family of the late, great Christopher “Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace received the ASCAP Founders Award from the family of his longtime collaborator and champion, Sean “Diddy” Combs. The entire room was on its feet while Biggie’s original DJs, DJ Clark Kent and DJ Enuff, battled it out with classic songs from his untouchable catalog; it was clear that his legacy lives on, even 20 years after his passing.