American performing rights organization Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) saluted the top European songwriters at its 2005 London Awards staged last night at the Dorchester Hotel. The black-tie gala dinner and awards ceremony honored the songwriters, composers and publishers of the most performed songs on U.S. radio and television in the past year in all genres of music.
A highlight of the evening was the BMI Icon presentation to legendary songwriter and recording artist Steve Winwood
, who was honored for his "enduring influence on generations of music makers." With a career that spans more than 40 years as both a solo artist and as a member of the Spencer Davis Group
, Traffic and Blind Faith
, Winwood's many songwriting credits include "Gimme Some Lovin'," "Can't Find My Way Home," "While You See a Chance," "Higher Love" and "Back In the High Life," among many others.
"It's My Life," written by Mark Hollis
and published by Universal Music Publishing Ltd., was named Song of the Year and received the organization's highest accolade. Hollis was a member of 80s synthpop band Talk Talk
who first recorded the song, and the No Doubt
remake earned it the award.
"Run," written by Snow Patrol
members Iain Archer, Nathan Connolly, Gary Lightbody, Mark McClelland and Jonny Quinn, was named BMI's College Song of the Year for tallying the most performances on American college radio.
The BMI Dance Award went to "Listen to Your Heart," written by Per Gessle
and Mats Persson. Recorded by Belgium-based duo D.H.T.
, the song is a remake of the 1989 #1 hit by Roxette
whose members Per Gessle and Marie Fredriksson
were present to receive the award. It was the first public appearance by Fredriksson since her recent recovery from brain cancer.
Million-Air certificates were also presented throughout the evening in recognition of those songs that have had two million or more US performances. Topping the list were Sting
's "Every Breath You Take," which reached the eight million performance plateau and the Van Morrison
classic "Brown Eyed Girl," which won a seven million performance award. Other Million-Air recipients included the Rolling Stones
, Eric Clapton
, the Bee Gees
, Sir Elton John
and Shania Twain
Now marking its 65th year in business, BMI is an American performing rights organization that represents more than 300,000 songwriters, composers and publishers in all genres of music. With a repertoire of more than 6.5 million musical works from around the world, the non-profit-making corporation collects license fees from businesses that use music, which it then distributes as royalties to the musical creators and copyright owners it represents.