Lionel Richie will be honored as the 2016 MusiCares® Person of the Year on Saturday, February 13, 2016, Proceeds from the 26th annual benefit gala dinner and concert to be held during GRAMMY Week two nights prior to the 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards in Los Angeles. The event will provide essential support for MusiCares which ensures that music people have a place to turn in times of financial, medical and personal need.
Performers include Lady Antebellum ,Pharrell Williams and Luke Bryan. Rickey Minor, current music director for “American Idol” and past two-time music director for the GRAMMY Awards, will be the evening’s musical director. Additional performers will be announced shortly.
Richie is being honored as the 2016 MusiCares Person of the Year in recognition of his significant creative accomplishments as well as his career-spanning charitable work, which has included support for a range of causes over the years, ranging from AIDS and human rights to famine, poverty, human trafficking and women’s issues. He is also a longtime contributor to the United Negro College Fund.
“I’m really very proud of this,” said Richie in a statement. “As far as I’m concerned, this is the highest honor in our music business because it means you have a career. You’ve survived the journey, if you will. The people who have been there defy categories. When you say Barbra Streisand, Bob Dylan and Paul McCartney — are you kidding me? When I got in this business I wanted to be like them. When you get recognition like this, it’s everything. It really is the top of the mountain when it comes down to what your industry gives as recognition for great work, and the opportunity to help raise funds to sustain MusiCares’ critical safety net of programs for members of the music community is momentous to me.”
The 2016 MusiCares Person of the Year gala will begin with a reception and silent auction offering an exclusive and unparalleled selection of luxury items, VIP experiences and one-of-a-kind celebrity memorabilia for bidding guests. The reception and silent auction will be followed by a dinner, the award presentation and a tribute concert featuring renowned musicians. The MusiCares Person of the Year tribute ceremony is one of the most prestigious events held during Grammy Week. The celebration culminates with the 58th Annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center on Monday, February 15, 2016. The telecast will be broadcast live on the CBS Television Network at 8 p.m. ET/PT.
Richie’s career includes selling more than 100 million albums and achieving countless honors, from an Academy Award for his song “Say You, Say Me” to four GRAMMY Awards, one of the accomplishments he is most proud of is his bachelor’s degree in economics from Tuskegee University.
As a member of the Commodores, he wrote hits such as “Three Times A Lady,” “Still” and “Easy.” As a solo artists the diamond-certified Album Of The Year GRAMMY winner Can’t Slow Down followed in 1983, with nine # 1 hits such as “All Night Long (All Night),” “Penny Lover,” “Stuck On You,” “Hello, ” and “Endless Love”.
The next year he performed at the historic 1984 Summer Olympics closing ceremony. In 1985 he joined forces with Michael Jackson to write one of most important pop songs in history, GRAMMY-winning “We Are The World,” for USA For Africa and the album We Are The World. A decade later, in 1996 he began a run of powerful, personal albums that commenced with the gold-certified Louder Than Words, followed by 1998’s Time , 2001’s Renaissance. 2004 Just For You, 2006 Coming Home amd 2009 Just Go. His 10th full-length album, Tuskegee. It would mark his third No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200 and attain platinum status.
In addition to a total of four GRAMMY Awards, he won ASCAP’s “Golden Note Award” and “Lifetime Achievement Award,” as well as 14 American Music Awards, five People’s Choice Awards, a World Music Awards Legend Award, TV Land Icon Award, BET Lifetime Achievement Award, Germany’s Echo Award for lifetime achievement, Hong Kong’s Rojo Award, Goldene Kamera Award, Italy’s San Remo Festival Lifetime Achievement Award, and The Recording Academy Los Angeles Chapter Governors Award, among others. He received the Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award presented at Harvard University. He’s been inducted to both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame and knighted in France, receiving the Légion d’Honneur.
Always giving back, his charity work extends from the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, City of Hope and Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center to UNICEF and the Art of Elysium.
The 2016 MusiCares Person of the Year gala will begin with a reception and silent auction offering an exclusive and selection of luxury items, VIP experiences and one-of-a-kind celebrity memorabilia for bidding guests. The reception and silent auction will be followed by a dinner, the award presentation and a tribute concert featuring renowned musicians. The MusiCares Person of the Year tribute ceremony is one of the most prestigious events held during Grammy Week. The celebration culminates with the 58th Annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center on Monday, February 15, 2016. The telecast will be broadcast live on the CBS Television Network at 8 p.m. ET/PT.
The MusiCares Foundation offers programs and services to members of the music community, including emergency financial assistance for basic living expenses such as rent, utilities and car payments; medical expenses including doctor, dentist and hospital bills; psychotherapy; and treatment for HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, hepatitis C, and other critical illnesses. MusiCares offers nationwide educational workshops covering a variety of subjects, including financial, legal, medical, and substance abuse issues, and programs in collaboration with health care professionals that provide services such as flu shots, hearing tests, and medical/dental screenings.