On Tuesday night in Nashville, the stars were glowing as they walked the red carpet for the Music Biz 2019 Awards Dinner at the JW Marriott.
Rock legend Peter Frampton humbly accepted the Chairman’s Award for Sustained Creative Achievement, saying, “I am having some health problems, but I really am the luckiest guy because my passion for my music has kept me going through many, many years of up and down, up and down, sideways,” he said. “Whatever has been thrown at me… it’s all part of this lifelong dream. I live every day playing my guitar, writing music, recording and performing. Thank you for this incredible award. I don’t deserve it, but I thank you dearly.”
Pop star Bebe Rexha and Country phenom Kane Brown were both honored with the Breakthrough Artist Award. During her speech, Rexha called for more diversity in the music industry, saying, “If I can leave you with one thing: we need more women executives in the music business. Only 15 percent of women in the music business actually run labels. The number is really staggering. Women deserve a chance and I will make space for them. Women will be equal to all the f**kin’ men. We need more f**kin’ women in higher spots so pay ’em extra, give ’em time, respect them. Women are the ones that have always taught me the most important information in my career.”
Brown also talked about diversity in the music industry, telling Variety on the red carpet, and the audience in his acceptance speech, “When you go to my shows, everybody looks different – they don’t look like they’re supposed to be in the crowd, so it’s a cool feeling,” said the singer, who is biracial. He also gave a big thank you to his team at Sony Nashville who “… gave me a chance and is opening doors for other people who don’t think they belong in country music,” he said.
One of the people that had a huge part in helping Brown get to where he is today, is Sony Music Nashville Chairman/CEO Randy Goodman, who received the Presidential Award for Outstanding Executive Achievement. Goodman also helped catapult Country artist Luke Combs, who performed his number one hit songs, “Beautiful Crazy” and “She Got the Best of Me,” during the ceremony.
Darius Rucker was the recipient of the Harry Chapin Memorial Humanitarian Award in recognition of supporting St. Jude Children’s Hospital, the MUSC Children’s Hospital, Make A Wish Foundation, American Red Cross and many others.
Other recipients last night were some of the most influential people in the industry: Richard Storms and Alayna Alderman, owners of Record Archives store in Rochester, NY were awarded the Independent Spirit Award; The Orchard co-founder Richard Gottehrer accepted the Outstanding Achievement Award and Giles Martin, son of Sir George Martinrepresented his father for his induction into the Music Business Hall of Fame.
The dinner was sponsored by BuzzAngle Music, City National Bank, Cracker Barrel, Jammber, and TiVo.
This year’s conference and awards dinner were the biggest the Music Business Association has had in the last 17 years. The conference brought together some of the top executives, influencers and artists in today’s industry. With panels on diversity, law, tech, finance and even parenting, and health, Music Biz 2019 included aspects of the business and industry that no other conference has ever touched on before, in one place at one time.
Jim Donio, the iconic president of the Music Business Association for the last 30 years, was the driving force behind Music Biz. In his annual speech, Donio called upon his peers to reflect on what inspires them in music and the industry. Connecting the younger and next generations – like Kane Brown – with veteran legends – like Peter Frampton – Donio brought together the perfect combination of artist and industry at Music Biz 2019.