Photo credit PictureGroup/ ASCAP
The 28th annual ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) Rhythm & Soul Music Awards were held Thursday night at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles, during BET Awards week. The prestigious gala honors songwriters and publishers behind the most performed ASCAP songs measured on the 2014 R&B, Hip-Hop, and Gospel charts. Lauryn Hill was given the ASCAP Golden Note Award, following in the footsteps of such past recipients as Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Quincy Jones, Pharrell Williams and Alicia Keys. The iconic singer delivered an electrifying performance of her hits. Fans were on their feet rocking to “Conformed to Love,” “I Gotta Find Peace of Mind,” “Lost Ones,” and “Ex-Factor.” The crowd went wild when Hill performed her Grammy-winning hit “Doo Wop (That Thing).”
Timbaland and Jay-Z shared Songwriter of the Year honors. The two musical powerhouses were recognized along with the “greatest living entertainer” Beyoncé, for Top Hip Hop/R&B Song (“Drunk in Love”). The Publisher of the Year went to Sony/ATV Tunes, Jeremih & Kid Ink took home the award for Top Rap Song (“Show Me” featuring Chris Brown), and Bart Millard won the Top Gospel Song award for “I can Only Imagine”. Timbaland received a video tribute from his friends including Missy Elliott and the cast of “Empire.” Missy stated,
“Timbaland has always changed music over and over and over again,” said Missy. “I’ve been knowing Tim since high school. He’s always been a genius.”
Other performers included D.R.A.M., Jazmine Sullivan, Migos and Smokie Norful. D.R.A.M. performed his fan favorite single “Cha Cha,” Jazmine Sullivan belted out her ballad “Forever Don’t Last.” Migos turned it up a little with their hit “Handsome and Wealthy,” and Smokie Norful opened with “No Greater Love.”
Before the ceremony begun Melanie Fiona, Coolio, Sevyn Streeter, Michelle Williams, Migos, Jazmine Sullivan, Timbaland and more walked the red carpet.