Silenced for two years, the Songwriters Hall of Fame is ready to party again, welcoming a diverse set of artists for its Class of 2022, including pop diva Mariah Carey, the weirdly cool producers the Neptunes, the British electro-pop band Eurythmics, psychedelic bluesman Steve Miller and the iconic Isley Brothers.
The songwriters will be honored at a pandemic-delayed gala Thursday night at the Marriott Marquis in New York. While a list of performers and presenters has not been revealed, past inductees have been serenaded or hailed by th16e likes of Lady Gaga, Stevie Nicks, Billy Joel, Jon Bon Jovi and Ed Sheeran.
Lil Nas X will also be honored Thursday with the Hal David Starlight Award, which recognizes “gifted young songwriters who are making a significant impact in the music industry via their original songs.”
The ceremony has been described as a cross between the Grammy Awards and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame festivities. Songwriters are eligible for induction after writing hit songs for at least 20 years and the hall includes such iconic songwriters as Burt Bacharach, Missy Elliott, Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, Billy Joel and Carly Simon. New annual slates are voted on by the membership.
Carey, whose hits include “We Belong Together” and “Hero,” released her self-titled debut album in 1990. With 19 No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, she is only behind the Beatles, who had 20 songs top the chart. Carey is the only artist to have No. 1 hits in the 1990s, 2000s, 2010s and 2020s.
Ronald, Rudolph and O’Kelly Isley crafted three volcanic singles from 1959-62: “Shout,” “Respectable” and “Twist and Shout.” And for the next 30 years — joined in 1969 by younger brothers Marvin and Ernie Isley and cousin Chris Jasper — they made even more: “That Lady,” ”Fight the Power,” “Work to Do,” “Harvest for the World” and “For the Love of You.”
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Miller perfected a psychedelic blues sound with such hits as “Take the Money and Run,” “Fly Like an Eagle,” “Abracadabra,” “The Joker,” “Jet Airliner” and “Jungle Love.” Miller’s “Greatest Hits 1974-78” is among the 25 bestselling albums of all time.
The members of Eurythmics — Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart — led the New Wave charge in the 1980s with songs like “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” and “Here Comes the Rain Again.” This year they were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
The Neptunes are the creative, innovative production-songwriting duo of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo who shaped pop and urban radio from the ’90s well into the 2000s thanks to crafting hits for Britney Spears, Jay-Z, Justin Timberlake, Usher and Beyoncé.
Non-performing solo nominees this year are William “Mickey” Stevenson, a producer during Motown’s golden era, and Rick Nowels, who co-wrote over 60 Top 20 singles worldwide, including Belinda Carlisle’s global hit “Heaven is a Place on Earth.”
Master songwriter Paul Williams will receive the Johnny Mercer Award, and Universal executive Jody Gerson will receive the Abe Olman Publisher Award.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.