Over 500 songwriters, recording artists and music industry leaders gathered at the 20th Anniversary ASCAP Rhythm and Soul Music Awards, held June 25th at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles, CA, to salute the top songwriters and publishers behind the most popular music of 2006. A special highlight of the evening was the presentation of the ASCAP Voice of Music Award to "Queen of Hip-Hop Soul" Mary J. Blige.
Marilyn Bergman, ASCAP President and Chairman, hosted the all-star gathering, which included special guest presenters Akon, Keri Hilson, MC Lyte, The Underdogs, Ted Winn and others, plus live performances by some of today's hottest stars and emerging artists, including Keyshia Cole, Biz Markie, Wynter Gordon, Rock City, Karen Clark Sheard and Ne-Yo.
With three award-winning songs apiece, Mary J. Blige, Johntá Austin and Jermaine "JD" Dupri shared the coveted Songwriter of the Year title.
This is Jermaine Dupri's sixth time being named ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Songwriter of the Year and his third consecutive win. In 2005, Dupri earned the prestigious ASCAP Golden Note Award, and earlier this year, he was named ASCAP's Pop Songwriter of the Year.
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