Songwriters Hall of Fame Reveal Date for 2022 Induction and Awards Gala – Billboard
The Songwriters Hall of Fame is moving forward with its 51st induction and awards gala on June 16. The event will be held at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York, which has been the venue since 2005.
The show has been postponed twice due to COVID-19. It was originally scheduled for June 11, 2020, then postponed to June 10, 2021. As a result of these double postponements, winners and inductees who were first notified of their awards in December 2019 will have had to wait 2-1 / 2 years to finally bow out.
Among the winners are Paul Williams, who will receive the organization’s highest award, the Johnny Mercer Award, and Jody Gerson, chairman and CEO of Universal Music Publishing Group, who will receive the Abe Olman Publisher Award.
The inductees are Mariah Carey, Steve Miller, Rick Nowels and William “Mickey” Stevenson and former members of three famous ensembles: Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart of Eurythmics; Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo of the Neptunes; and Ernie Isley, Marvin Isley, O’Kelly Isley, Ronald Isley, Rudolph Isley and Chris Jasper of the Isley Brothers.
The June 16 date was first announced on February 10, 2021, but with surges and variations, it only recently became clear that the event could go ahead. The decision to move forward was made by SHOF’s eight-member executive committee, including Linda Moran, president and CEO.
“I’m relieved the decision has been made and I’m really excited to get back to what we hopefully see as a standard,” Moran said. “But now I am also anxious. I’m about three months old and there are so many details to sort out. I have spoken to all of the honorees and inductees. They will all be able to do it. We couldn’t do it if some of them said they don’t want to travel. They have all confirmed their attendance.
“I think our event is going to be very cathartic for people,” adds Moran. “We are considered an annual family reunion of the songwriting and music publishing communities. People want to come back to the same venue, same show format, and hopefully see the same people.
Moran thinks the cozy familiarity of the evening’s format is part of its appeal: “We don’t have the millions of dollars [to] put on a really glitzy show. Everything is on a small budget.
The event was more than half sold out when the pandemic hit, so Moran only has to sell the remaining 40% of the venue. (Ticket buyers have all allowed SHOF to hold onto the money until the event takes place, rather than asking for refunds.)
Moran likes to have a full house, believing it adds to the intimacy of the event, but she may have to change her ways this year.
“I’ve been known to have a hard time turning down a sale,” she says with self-deprecating charm. “They say I might even sell the Brooklyn Bridge. But I’m going to have to really hold back this year. I may need to cut 10-20 paintings. We usually have 1,300 people on the floor. Now we may have to [reduce] than by 200. As we go along, we’ll see if we can open it up more.
SHOF was lucky in one respect: None of the winners or inductees died in the long wait for the honors, even though four of the people are over 80.
The SHOF will award an additional prize, the Hal David Starlight Award. SHOF has yet to reveal the identity of this year’s recipient.
This award was first presented in 2004 as the Starlight Award and was renamed two years later to honor the Oscar- and Grammy-winning lyricist (and president of SHOF from 2000 to 2010 ). The award is given to songwriters “who are at the peak of their career”. It’s supposed to be a balancing act with the Johnny Mercer Award, which goes to a master songwriter. The last five winners of the Hal David Starlight Award are Nate Ruess, Nick Jonas, Ed Sheeran, Sara Bareilles and Halsey.
The annual induction and awards gala is SHOF’s single major source of revenue. So how was the organization able to stay afloat?
“We have a shoestring budget, including office management,” Moran says. “We only have one full-time employee. We were lucky enough to have enough money from income from past dinner parties, which were very successful. So we were OK. But now it’s time to put some money in the coffers.
Not having the event was also difficult for Moran personally. As she says, “I think what touched me most emotionally about the first cancellation was that I realized through everyone’s feelings towards me how much they looked forward to the event. . They realized the importance of what the evening means and that it is different from other award ceremonies. Everyone who attends feels like a member of the family for at least that night.
Moran, whose long career in the industry includes being Warner Music Group’s first female executive, considers her role with SHOF the “most rewarding” she has ever had. “I got to see how much respect and prestige the organization has gained while honoring the songwriters who are the truly unsung heroes.”
There are approximately 450 Hall of Fame inductees. A songwriter with a remarkable song catalog qualifies for induction 20 years after a song’s first major commercial release.
Gala tables, which seat 10 to 12 people, range from $17,500 to $50,000.
If Moran is forced to cut some tables, the cheapest tables will be the first to go. Moran realizes this will force some people to choose more expensive tables, but she notes (in full sale mode) “You always get the best night and it’s all tax deductible.”
For more information regarding purchasing tables, tickets or newspaper advertisements, contact Julia Schuettenberg or Linda Buckley of Buckley Hall Evens at 914-579-1000 or by email at SHOF@buckleyhallevents.com.