Motown Records founder Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson, the iconic songwriter and producer who helped shape the company's legacy, were both honored with a tribute at the MusiCares Persons of the Year gala Friday night at the L.A. Convention Center.
Gordy, who is 93, and Robinson, 82, received a musical tribute from various heritage Motown acts and more contemporary artists. Gordy spoke briefly accepting his award. He said, "I'm so happy to be here with my best friend, damn."
Smokey Robinson also spoke about their long friendship and its effect on his life. He said, “I wanted to be a singer, I wanted to be in show business, I wanted to write songs and make music. I never thought it would be possible for me from where I grew up. But then I got there because I met Berry Gordy. He took me under his wing. He is my mentor.”
Elton John was at the event and he sat a table beside former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Nile Rodgers, Nancy Wilson of Heart, Jimmy Jam and Tom Hanks. Stevie Wonder and Lionel Richie were there and provided surprise highlights.
The annual event also includes a silent music memorabilia auction, along with bids on larger prizes preceding the ceremony. The event raises money for musicians in need.
[Source: Classic Hits Today]