Bruno Mars, Carly Simon and Trent Reznor were among the winners at the annual American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (Ascap) Pop Music Awards on Wednesday (18Apr12).
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Simon was handed one of the industry's highest honours, the Ascap Founders Award, while Peter Frampton landed the Ascap Global Impact.
Steve Baltin (Rolling Stone) adds:
Simon, who wrapped up the night with a rare live performance of "Anticipation" and "You're So Vain," was nostalgic as she spoke with Rolling Stone before the awards. "The reason I started singing is because I really couldn't speak . . . I had such a bad stammer," Simon recalled. "Our whole house became sort of an opera because my whole family knew that I couldn't speak, and they didn't want me to sing alone. So everybody began to sing. It was quite a delightful and musical childhood. It became so natural to me to write songs."
Despite her music-focused ubringing, Simon never planned on being a singer. In fact, she might not have made it her livelihood if it weren't for Cat Stevens and James Taylor. "The only reason I did do it professionally is because of Cat Stevens," says Simon. "I got a call from Jac Holzman, who was the person who actually signed me to a contract, saying, 'What would it take for you to get on stage? 'Cause you got asked to open for Cat Stevens at the Troubadour.' I said, 'Get me Russ Kunkel as a drummer,' knowing that he wouldn't be able to make it 'cause he was on tour with James Taylor. Lo and behold, that day James was in a motorcycle accident and broke all of his extremities. So the next day I got a call back from Jac Holzman saying, 'Well, Kunkel's available – when do we start?' And I couldn't say no."
Bill Withers, who helped present Simon with her award and honored her with a speech, told Rolling Stone, "We're both class of 1971. We started the same year, so I've been never in the music thing when Carly wasn't."
Yea for Carly. I can't think of anyone who deserves the honor more.
Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"