Dedicated to honoring composers and lyricists throughout the world, the Songwriters HoF will hold its 41st annual induction and awards dinner June 17 at New York City’s Marriott Marquis Hotel.
In addition to Cohen, DeShannon and Foster, the organization will also induct Johnny Mandel and Earth, Wind & Fire’s Maurice White, Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Larry Dunn and Al McKay.
“Our 2010 inductees are truly representational of the heart and soul of the world’s popular music soundtrack, Songwriters HoF chairman / CEO Hal David said. “We are looking forward to another memorable evening where we honor their extraordinary accomplishments.”
David knows plenty of which he speaks. As Burt Bacharach’s lyricist he penned the words to some of the biggest hits of the 1960s and '70s, including “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head,” “Do You Know The Way To San Jose,” “The Look Of Love” and “(They Long To Be) Close To You.”
This year’s inductees list is pretty impressive, although we’re betting that many people probably thought Cohen was already a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame. What with classic compositions like “Suzanne,” “Bird On A Wire” and “Hallelujah,” it’s a wonder the Hall didn’t induct him sooner.
But that could be said for every 2010 inductee. Jackie DeShannon’s songs have been performed by artists ranging from Al Green to Van Morrison to Bruce Springsteen. One of her most famous compositions is 1969’s “Put A Little Love In Your Heart,” which she wrote with Randy Myers and Jim Holliday.
Then there’s David Foster, a one-man music machine who has not only written songs such as Chicago’s “Hard To Say I’m Sorry” and John Parr’s recording of “Man in Motion” for the soundtrack to the flick “St. Elmo’s Fire,” but has also worked with just about every major artist at one time or another including Alice Cooper, Billy Joel, Mariah Carey, Chris Botti and Kenny Rogers.
Of course, Johnny Mandel isn’t a slouch when it comes to songwriting. A five-time Grammy recipient as well as an Oscar and Emmy winner, Mandel rose out of the Big Band era, playing with Joe Venuti’s orchestra when he was still a teenager.
Mandel has also created some of Hollywood’s most memorable film scores and movie songs, including “Suicide Is Painless,” which you might know better as the theme to both the movie and TV show “M.A.S.H.” Mandel wrote the instantly memorable melody while Mike Altman, son of “M.A.S.H.” movie director Robert Altman, wrote the lyrics.
Rounding off the list of this year’s inductees are Earth, Wind & Fire members Maurice White, Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Larry Dunn and Al McKay. Some of the group’s biggest, self-composed hits include “Shining Star,” “September” and “Sing A Song.”
Tickets for this year’s Songwriters Hall Of Fame induction ceremonies are priced at $1,000 with net proceeds going to the Hall’s programs. For more information, click here for the Songwriters HoF Web site.