Jay-Z, Rick James among the key winners.

50 Cent took home three awards, including songwriter of the year, at ASCAP's 17th annual Rhythm & Soul Music Awards. The rapper's party anthem "In Da Club" also claimed top R&B/hip-hop song and top rap song honors.

Recognizing the songwriters and publishers of the top R&B/hip-hop, rap and reggae songs in 2003, the awards ceremony took place last evening at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. Jay-Z and Rick James received special honors. Jay-Z was presented with the ASCAP Golden Note Award, while the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Heritage Award was given to James.

The night's other top winners included Sean Paul (reggae artist of the year) and "Shake Ya Tailfeather" (top soundtrack song of the year). EMI Music Publishing won publisher of the year for the 11th consecutive time.