Songwriters Hall of Fame Ceremony

The Songwriters Hall of Fame inducted their class of 2013 Thursday night in New York City. The four-hour ceremony featured stellar performances and memorable speeches.  Steven Tyler asked the audience, “How many of you got laid last night? See, that’s why we’re songwriters. It all came from that.” After the speech, Tyler and Joe Perry performed Walk This Way.

Billy Joel inducted Mick Jones and Lou Gramm. Just before accepting the award, Jones said, “It’s like we’re kind of legit now. If my parents were alive, I’d love them to have experience this with me. It’s wonderful…a wonderful gift. It just makes me feel like a lot of my life was worthwhile.” And Gramm added, “To me, it’s as equally as important as a Grammy… Mick and I have always prided ourselves on our songwriting and I think our songs, album for album, stand the test of time.” Then they took the stage together for the first time in 10 years and performed Juke Box Hero and I Want to Know What Love Is, backed by a choir, which brought the house down.

Sting opened the show with Elton John’s Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting; then he presented the Johnny Mercer Award to Elton and Bernie Taupin. Taupin explained how without Elton he would just be a story writer, and Elton said Bernie was the second real relationship in his life, after his grandmother.

Holly Knight, who wrote hit songs for Pat BenatarScandalAerosmithBon Jovi and many others, was inducted by Scandal’s Patty Smythe, who sang Warrior. Holly then sat at the piano and sang Love Is a Battlefield.

 The Pioneer Award went to Motown founder Berry Gordy, who was introduced by Smokey Robinson.

Hear Billy Joel:

More from Stacey DuFord

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