BMI honored the best and brightest in gospel music at the BMI Trailblazers of Gospel Music luncheon, held on March 23 at La Cave in Las Vegas, Nevada. Renowned singer/songwriter Donnie McClurkin was awarded the event’s highest honor of Song of the Year for his hit “I Need You,” which spent 58 weeks on Billboard’s Hot Gospel Songs chart. The private ceremony was hosted by BMI Vice President, Creative, Atlanta, Catherine Brewton and Assistant Vice President, Creative, Los Angeles, Wardell Malloy.
The uplifting event also celebrated the remarkable achievements of the gospel community, recognizing the Ten Most Performed Songs of the Year (2017) from its affiliated songwriters. Those songs included “#YDIA” written by Lucius B. Hoskins; “Better” written by Jason Clayborn; “Father Jesus Spirit” written and performed by Fred Hammond with co-writer Shelton Summons; “God Provides” written by Kirk Franklin; “God’s Grace” written and performed by Luther Barnes; “Hang On” written by Derrick Starks; “Never Have to Be Alone” written by Alvin Love III; “Victory Belongs to Jesus” written and performed by Todd Dulaney; “You” written and performed by Jeremy Boyd with co-writer Jermaine Dolly and “You Deserve It” written by David Bloom.
“It was an honor to recognize the work of these incredible songwriters who have touched so many with their unique gift,” said Brewton. “Their music has been a cornerstone of worship and they continue to inspire others through their songwriting.”