Joan Sebastian, Anthony Santos (of Aventura) and Tommy Torres were named songwriters of the year at the 18th annual ASCAP Latin Music Awards.

It was the first time in the awards' nearly two-decade history that three songwriters tied for the top honor.

In addition, career achievement honors went to Armando Manzanero and Jorge Luis Piloto. Manzanero, the Mexican singer/songwriter who has penned some of Latin music's most memorable songs - including "Esta Tarde Vi Llover" and "Somos Novios" (It's Impossible) - was on hand to collect ASCAP's Latin Heritage Award from ASCAP president/chairman Paul Williams and VP membership group-Latin, Alexandra Lioutikoff.

Jorge Luis Piloto, author of contemporary hits like "Quitame Ese Hombre," picked up the Golden Note Award. The publisher of the year award went to Sony/ATV Discos Music Publishing, which had 36 charting songs, including Latin song of the year "El Amor," penned by Tito "El Bambino and Joan Ortiz Espada. This marked the 11th time Sony/ATV has taken the top honor at the ASCAP Latin Music Awards.

"This award is for you, the songwriters," said Jorge Mejía, VP Sony/ATV Music Publishing Latin America and U.S. Latin as he picked up his award.

The inaugural Independent Publisher of the year award went to Premium Latin Publishing, the publishing home of songwriter of the year Anthony "Romeo" Santos.

The ASCAP Latin Music Awards took place March 23 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel and featured acoustic performances by Luis Enrique (who gave the Golden Note award to Piloto), Alejandro Lerner (who gave the heritage award to Manzanero), Carlos Baute, Shaila Durcal and Wilfran Castillo, among others.

The evening was peppered by emotional moments from the likes of Luis Enrique, whose current hit, "Yo No Se Mañana," was penned by Piloto (with Jorge Villamizar).

"The problem with writing with Piloto is he makes no mistakes," said a rueful Luis Enrique. Piloto, a songwriter known for his catchy radio hits, was self-effacing as he accepted his award. "I've always let the music speak for me," he said.

Aventura's Santos wasn't there to pick up his award, which was collected by a representative from his publishing company, Premium Latin. Also present were Torres, Sebastian and Manzanero, who were all honored for their multiple hits throughout the year.

"This is a dream come true," said an emotional Sebastian, who is about to kick off a U.S. tour with Alejandro Fernández and Marco Antonio Solís (also present). "I want to tell all the composers present here today that it's possible to make dreams come true, even when you're 60, or 70 or more years old," said Sebastian.

Awards were given out in pop, tropical, regional Mexican urban and television categories. For a full list of winners, click here.