All inductees are BMI songwriter/artists, including Charles Fox ("Killing Me Softly With His Song"), Daryl Hall & John Oates ("Sara Smile"), Don McLean ("American Pie"), songwriting duo Barrett Strong and Norman Whitfield ("I Heard It Through The Grapevine") and this year's BMI Urban Awards ICON Al Green ("Let's Stay Together"). BMI songwriter Neil Sedaka ("Breaking Up Is Hard To Do") was honored with the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award.
Other honorees were Stevie Wonder (Johnny Mercer Award) and Rob Thomas of matchbox twenty, who received the first ever Starlight Award. "What the World Needs Now is Love," written by Burt Bacharach and Songwriters Hall of Fame Chairman/CEO Hal David, was named Towering Song; Warner/Chappell Music Chairman/CEO Les Bider received the Abe Olman Publisher's Award; and Toys 'R' Us Children's Fund Chairman Michael Goldstein was the recipient of the Patron of the Arts Award.
This special evening was taped live on June 10 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City and features special performances by the honorees and many of their presenters, including Roberta Flack, Macy Gray, Michael McDonald, Garth Brooks, Dionne Warwick, Brian McKnight, Jamie Cullum and India.Arie.