|"BMI is proud to have been an anchor sponsor of this event since its inception three years ago. It plays an important role in raising the visibility of the creative people in the music industry with our elected lead-ers. It also gives us the opportunity to acknowledge the crucial role that our legislators play in protecting the copyrights of our songwriters and music publishers," said Fred Cannon, BMI Senior Vice President of Government Relations.|| |
"The Heroes Awards are part of our close working relationship with the Washington Chapter of The Recording Academy. The Academy's traditional focus on support for music professionals takes on an important added dimension in our Nation's capital as we strive together to create a deeper awareness of the economic and cultural significance of our creative community."
Pictured the Washington, D.C. Heroes Awards gala are (l-r) BMI's Fred Cannon, Martina McBride, Recording Academy President Neil Portnow
Recording Academy President Neil Portnow unveiled the launch of the Grammy Cultural Policy Initiative, designed to utilize the Academy's resources to advance the rights of artists through advocacy, education and dialogue.
"At a time when the music industry is often viewed as divided, the Recording Academy is uniquely positioned to serve as a unifying force between artist and label, and between industry and consumer," said Portnow. "As an organization representing thousands of recording professionals, we have an obligation to help create an environment where they can grow creatively and thrive professionally. It is our hope that through this initiative, we can utilize the Academy's broad representation to find common ground and workable solutions, and advance the rights of the music community."
In attendance at the Heroes Awards to hear Portnow's remarks were representatives from many important music associations, including the RIAA; the Recording Artists Coalition; the American Federation of Television & Radio Artists; the American Federation of Musicians; as well as prominent members of Congress and the creative community, including author Dr. Maya Angelou, BMI artist/songwriters Bo Diddley and Martina McBride and actress Lynda Carter.
The Heroes Awards gala is the Academy's signature event in Washington, D.C., and is presented annually to honor outstanding members of Congress, artists and institutions that have improved the environment for the creative community. This year's event was held at the Willard Inter-Continental Hotel in honor of country music star Martina McBride, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Rep. William Delahunt, (D-MA), and the Maryland School for the Blind's music therapy program.