BITS & PIECES – 42nd ANNUAL SONGWRITERS HALL OF FAME INDUCTION CEREMONIES
Although it doesn’t get a fraction of the media attention that the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the Songwriters Hall of Fame has actually been honoring musicians longer. The Songwriters Hall of Fame also pays tribute to composers from all genres of popular music.
The Class of 2011 included well-known names as Garth Brooks, Leon Russell, New Orleans living legend Allen Toussaint, as well as lesser known to the public but giants within the music biz, John Bettis (who wrote numerous hits for the Carpenters as well as “Human Nature” for Michael Jackson and “Crazy for You” for Madonna) and the writing tandem of Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly (who penned another Madonna hit, “Like A Virgin,” Cyndi Lauper’s “True Colors” and “I Drove All Night,” the Pretenders’ “I’ll Stand By You,” and the Divinyls’ 1990 suggestive novelty hit, “I Touch Myself.”)
Among the highlights at the Songwriters Hall of Fame Induction Dinner held at Times Square’s Marriott Marquis were Chrissy Hynde performing “I’ll Stand By You,” Leon Russell crooning his iconic 1971 ballad, “A Song for You,” and Billy Joel and Garth Brooks’ dueting on “Shameless” which was written by the former but turned out to be a big country hit for the latter.
It would be nice if there were an actual Songwriters Hall of Fame museum. Sadly, the only tangible evidence of the Songwriters Hall is a small wing in Santa Monica’s Grammy Museum.