Doja Cat was named BMI’s pop songwriter of the year at the 2023 BMI Pop Awards, held on Tuesday (May 9) at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. The smash “Stay,” recorded by The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber, was named BMI’s pop song of the year. Sony Music Publishing received publisher of the year.
As previously announced, Khalid received the BMI Champion Award, celebrating his musical contributions and philanthropic efforts.
The private event was hosted by BMI president and CEO Mike O’Neill and vice president worldwide creative Barbara Cane.
Doja Cat had six of the most-performed songs of 2022 – “Get Into It (Yuh)” (co-written with SULLY and Y2K), “I Like You (A Happier Song)” (co-written with Jasper Harris), “Need to Know,” “Vegas” (co-written with Rogét Chahayed and Yeti Beats), “Woman” (co-written with Aaron Horn (PRS), Linden Jay (PRS), Jidenna and Yeti Beats) and “You Right.” The writer/performer had received BMI’s R&B/hip-hop song of the year for co-writing “Say So” in 2021.
Throughout the ceremony, the 50 most-performed pop songs of the previous year in the U.S. were revealed, leading up to BMI’s pop song of the year, which went to “Stay” written by Cashmere Cat, Isaac “Zac” De Boni, Omer Fedi, Haan, The Kid LAROI (APRA), Michael “Finatik” Mulé, Charlie Puth and Blake Slatkin. The mega-hit was the first song to spend its first 40 weeks in the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart was the most-streamed song globally on Apple Music in 2022.
Sony Music Publishing received publisher of the year for representing 24 of the previous year’s most performed songs, including “Bad Habit,” “Numb,” “Running Up That Hill” and “Shivers.”
BMI also welcomed 53 first-time Pop Award winners including GAYLE and Sara Davis (“abcdefu”), Steve Lacy, Diana Gordon, and Matthew Castellanos (“Bad Habit”), Tyler Cole (“Meet Me at Our Spot”) and dazy and Nicky Youre (“Sunroof”).
Khalid was presented with the BMI Champion Award by O’Neill, who praised his musical contributions and work to benefit the lives of young people. After receiving the award, Khalid treated the audience to an acoustic performance of some of his biggest hits including, “Location,” “Better,” and “Talk.”
Khalid has amassed 18 BMI awards. In 2020, he was honored as BMI’s pop songwriter of the year and his hit “Talk” was named BMI’s R&B/hip-hop song of the year. In addition to his career in music, Khalid is a humanitarian. Alongside his mother, Linda Wolfe, he created The Great Khalid Foundation in 2020, offering music education programs, scholarship awards and community partnerships to support and nurture children.
Previous BMI Champion Award recipients include Mark Ronson, Residente, Sebastian Krys, Keith Urban and Lee Thomas Miller. For a full list of the 2023 honorees click here.