Marc Anthony was honored with ASCAP's Founders Award during the 20th annual ASCAP Latin Music Awards Tuesday night at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.
Anthony received the award from ASCAP president and chairman Paul Williams and soccer star David Beckham during a music-filled evening that honored the songwriters and publishers of ASCAP's most performed songs in Latin music in 2011.
"When I left home today I felt handsome, and then they stand me next to this," Anthony said with a laugh when he picked up his award, pointing to Beckham, a good friend. "This award goes to my team," he added in a more serious note. "I'm not an island. It's all about the love of music and the fight for music."
Anthony was serenaded by performances from Spanish singer Natalia Jimenez, with whom he's recorded before, and from his good friend Victor Manuelle.
The Songwriter of the Year award was given jointly to Claudia Brant and to Anthony "Romeo" Santos, while Pacific Latin Copyright won the Independent Publisher of the year award with eight winning songs. Sony/ATV Discos Music Publishing, whose roster includes Brant and Anthony, received the Publisher of the year award for the 10th consecutive year with an impressive 29 winning songs.
"In the past three weeks I happened to go to sold-out stadium concerts for two of the songwriters awarded tonight," said Jorge Mejia, Senior VP | Latin America & US Latin for Sony/ATV. "I was in an unusually amazing position to listen to entire audiences, in the tens of thousands, singing every word of every song. In all cases, I got to see the songwriters' faces while they just sat there on the stage listening to their songs being sung at them, simply beaming. I can only begin to imagine what they felt at that moment but more than anything, it was confirmation that it all starts, begins, and ends with the song."
The Latin song of the year award went to "Di Que Regresarás," written by Carlos M. Ferraresi "Ferra", and published by Canción Animal Publishing. The song was recorded by regional Mexican band La Original Banda El Limón.
Brant, one of the most prolific writers in the marketplace, won the Songwriter of the year award for the first time, and was feted with a musical tribute performed by her friends and fellow composers Luis Fonsi, Noel Schajris and Frankie J.
"A songwriter's career is built on perseverance and respect," she said in a lengthy speech where thanked multiple people who have been to her career. Those included singer/songwriters Noel Schajris and Luis Fonsi ("Mi hermano del alma," she said) who both sang hits they've penned with Brant. Afterward, Brant herself performed, showing of her vocal talent as well.
On his end, Santos-who coincidentally plays Los Angeles' Staples Center on March 21-has had a stellar year on the charts with his solo debut, which has already yielded three No. 1 songs on the Hot Latin songs chart. Currently he has two tracks on the top 10 of the chart.
Awards were also presented throughout the evening in Pop, Tropical, Regional Mexican, Urban, and Television categories, with ASCAP CEO John LoFrumento and ASCAP VP Latin membership Alexandra Lioutikoff among those giving key awards.
The ceremony was sponsored by Kohl's, which sells Anthony's exclusive clothing line, and also featured performances by Alejandra Guzmán, Pia Toscano and Frankie J.