Missy Elliott; vocal trio SWV; disco and R&B star Evelyn “Champagne” King; R&B/soul singer Jeffrey Osborne; and gospel trailblazers The Hawkins Family are the 2023 honorees at the Black Music Honors. Singer and actress LeToya Luckett and actor DeRay Davis are set to co-host the show, which will be taped live at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta on Friday, May 19.
The two-hour special will premiere on the Stellar Network on June 3 and will air in national broadcast syndication from Saturday, June 10 to Sunday, July 2. The show will also air on Bounce TV on June 19.
“Black music is the heartbeat of our culture, and the honorees for this year’s Black Music Honors represent the soul of American music,” founder and executive producer Don Jackson said in a statement. “We pay homage to the musical innovators who have paved the way for future generations. Our tribute performances not only celebrate the honorees of yesterday, but also showcase the influence and impact of their iconic sounds and styles on today’s artists with a beautiful symbiosis of past and present.”
Jennifer J. Jackson will serve as producer and executive in charge of production of the eighth annual Black Music Honors, with Michael A. Johnson serving as producer and director. Tickets for the live taping will be available on Friday, April 21 at the organization’s website or on Ticketmaster.
Elliott is a four-time Grammy winner. In 2019, she became the first female rapper to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the first female rapper to receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the VMAs.
Tramaine Hawkins of the legendary Hawkins family has won two Grammys. SWV and Osborne are both past Grammy nominees.
Black Music Honors is an annual event that acknowledges artists who have made significant contributions to African American culture and American music worldwide. The celebration of Black musical excellence was known as Celebrate the Soul of American Music from 1990 to 1993. In 2016, it was revived under the new name to tie into Black Music Month. Black Music Honors is produced by Chicago-based production company Central City Productions, which was founded in 1970 by Jackson.