David Arnold, Lulu, Don Black, Barbara Broccoli, Michael Wilson, and BMI's Frances Preston
Sting, The Bee Gees and Queen were among the songwriters honored tonight by BMI, the US performing rights organization. The awards are given annually to the BMI songs from the Performing Right Society (PRS) and European societies' repertoires that have received the most radio and television airplay in the United States. The event was hosted by Frances W. Preston, the organization's President and CEO, assisted by BMI Vice President of European Writer/Publisher Relations Phillip Graham.
Paul Curran, BMI's Frances Preston, Robin Gibb, and BMI's Phil Graham
This year, BMI presented a Special Citation of Achievement to Eon Productions for the many years it has produced the James Bond film series and the contribution the music from these films has made to our popular music culture. Producer Barbara Broccoli accepted the award on behalf of the organization. In addition, composer David Arnold picked up his fourth consecutive BMI Film Music Award for the score to "The World Is Not Enough."
BMI's Phil Graham, Steve Winwood, and BMI's Del Bryant
"Save Tonight" (Diesel 2 Publishing [STIM] / Warner/Chappell Music Ltd.) by Eagle-Eye Cherry was named Song of the Year and received the Robert S. Musel Award, named for the late legendary songwriter, music industry executive and long time BMI consultant. In addition to receiving a Pop Award tonight, "Save Tonight" was also named Song of the Year at the BMI Pop Awards held earlier this year in Los Angeles.
Two songs achieved an amazing 6 million plays: Sting's classic "Every Breath You Take" (EMI Music Publishing Ltd./Magnetic Music.) and "More" by Marcello Ciorciolini, Norman Newell, Nino Oliviero and Riz Ortolani. Sting also received two other awards in the 2 million plays category for "If Ever I Lose My Faith In You" and "Spirits In The Material World" (EMI Music Publishing Ltd./Magnetic Music).
Van Morrison was the only honoree in the 5 million plays category for his classic "Brown Eyed Girl" (Universal Music Publishing). Honorees in the 4 million plays category included John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney for "And I Love Her" (Northern Songs Ltd.). They also received a 2 million award for "Day Tripper" and a Pop Award for "Come Together". Other 4 million award winners were Barry and Robin Gibb for "To Love Somebody" (Gibb Brothers Music/BMG), and Claude Francois, Jacques Abel Jules Revaud and Gilles Thibaut for "My Way" (Eddie Barclay Editions [SACEM]/Jeune Musique Editions [SACEM]) recorded by Elvis Presley.
There were a total of seven winners in the 3 million performance category, including three for Steve Winwood: "Back In The High Life Again" (FS Ltd.), "The Finer Things" (FS Ltd.) and "Roll With It" (FS Ltd.); Mick Jagger and Keith Richards for "Honky Tonk Women"; Eric Clapton for "Tears In Heaven" (Warner/Chappell Music International Ltd.); Per Gessle for "It Must Have Been Love" (Jimmy Fun Music [STIM]) recorded by Roxette; and Sade for her smash hit "Sweetest Taboo" (Angel Music Ltd./Sony/ATV Music Publishing Ltd.).
Among those honored in the 2 million performance awards category were Sir Elton John, who scored three awards with "Someone Saved My Life Tonight," "I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That" and "Little Jeannie"; LuLu, Billy Lawrie and Steve DuBerry for the Tina Turner recording of "I Don't Wanna Fight" (Chrysalis Music Ltd. and Famous Music); Mick Jagger and Keith Richards for "Brown Sugar"; John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney for "Day Tripper" (Northern Songs Ltd.); Sting for "If Ever I Lose My Faith In You" (EMI Music Publishing Ltd./Magnetic Music); Donovan Leitch for "Sunshine Superman" (Donovan Music Ltd.); Freddie Mercury for "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" (EMI Music Publishing Ltd./Queen Music Ltd.), which also received a Country Award for Dwight Yoakam's recording of the song.
Beth Orton's "Stolen Car" (EMI Music Publishing Ltd.) was named College Song of The Year.
Pop Awards honorees included John Barry for "Millennium" (EMI United Partnership Ltd.) which was based on a re-recording of the string part from the James Bond movie theme "You Only Live Twice," and Roger Waters for the Class of 99 hit of "Another Brick In The Wall." Also honored were B*Witched members Lindsay Armaou, Edele Lynch, Keavy Lynch and Sinead O'Carroll for "C'est La Vie" (Bucks Music Ltd.). Gary Numan scored with "Cars" (Beggars Banquet Music Ltd.) on which he collaborated with Fear Factory, and Gavin Rossdale for Bush's "Chemicals Between Us." Noel Gallagher was a winner with "Cigarettes and Alcohol" (Creation Songs Ltd., Sony/ATV Music Publishing) recorded by Rod Stewart, and John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney were honored yet again for Junior Vasquez's version of "Come Together" (Northern Songs Ltd.).
Sir Elton John and Tim Rice were also honored with a Pop Award for Sir Elton's collaboration with LeAnn Rimes on "Written In The Stars" (Happenstance Ltd./Sixty Four Squares Music Ltd.). Jorgen Elofsson received a Pop Award for the Britney Spears' hits "Sometimes" and "(You Drive Me) Crazy" (BMG Music Publishing Scandinavia AB [STIM]/Zomba Music Publishers Ltd.); Australian writer Pam Sheyne scored an award for Christina Aguilera's hit "Genie In A Bottle" (Appletreesongs Ltd. / Warner/Chappell Music Ltd.).
The world of country music honored Freddie Mercury with a Country Award for "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" (EMI Publishing Ltd./Queen Music Ltd.) recorded by Dwight Yoakam and, as previously mentioned, the song also won an award in the 2 Million-Air category. The second Country Award winner was Steve Booker for "Somebody's Out There Watching" (Windswept Pacific Music Ltd.) recorded by The Kinleys.
The Dance Music Award went to Danski and DJ Delmundo for the Vengaboys smash hit "We Like To Party" (Violent Publishing BV), which also won a Pop Award. The Latin scene was also represented with a Latin Award going to Gianluca Grignani for "Mi Historia Entre Tus Dedos" (Universal Music Italia SRL [SIAE]).
Composer Richard Hartley was cited for his Emmy award-winning soundtrack of the American TV film "Alice In Wonderland."
The BMI Awards ceremony acknowledges the talents of British and European songwriters and composers whose works are represented by BMI in the United States. BMI is an American performing rights organization representing more than 250,000 American songwriters, composers and music publishers, and thousands of British and European songwriters and composers who license their works through BMI in the United States.