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Outkast, R.E.M., Pharrell, Patti Smith, More Nominated for Songwriters Hall of Fame

Outkast, R.E.M., the Neptunes (Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo), Eurythmics, Patti Smith, and many others are among the 24 acts nominated for the 2020 class of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Other performer nominees include Mariah Carey (who was nominated last year), Journey, Vince Gill, Gloria Estefan, the Isley Brothers, Beach Boy Mike Love, Bread’s David Gates and Steve Miller. Non-performing solo nominees are William “Mickey” Stevenson, Rick Nowels, Sonny Curtis, Jerry Fuller, Tony Macaulay, Bob McDill and Roger Nichols. Non-performing songwriting duos nominated include the late Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, L. Russell Brown and the late Irwin Levine, and Kye Fleming and Dennis Morgan. The news was first reported by the Associated Press.

If inducted, Outkast and Williams would boost hip-hop’s presence in the Hall: Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri and Missy Elliott were inducted in the past three years.

Songwriters are eligible for induction after writing hit songs for at least 20 years.

Six songwriters, or songwriting groups, will be officially inducted at the Hall’s 51st annual Induction & Awards Gala in New York on June 11, 2020. Eligible members can vote for three non-performing songwriters and three performing songwriters until December 16.

Most of the performer nominees need little introduction, but before Pharrell Williams made his name as a solo artist and producer, his work with Chad Hugo under the Neptunes monicker brought forth some of the most innovative R&B and pop songs of the late ‘90s and ‘00s, including work with Britney Spears, Jay-Z, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Beyoncé, Kelis and songs including Nelly’s “Hot In Herre,” Gwen Stefani’s “Hollaback Girl,” Snoop Dogg’s “Drop It Like It’s Hot” and Ludacris’ “Money Maker.”

Among the solo and duo songwriters, Stevenson cowrote many Motown hits, Nowels has worked extensively with Lana Del Rey and Stevie Nicks, Curtis wrote “I Fought the Law” and “Love Is All Around” (the theme for the “Mary Tyler Moore” show), Boyce & Hart wrote hits for the Monkees, Ahrens and Flaherty are a powerhouse Broadway writing duo, and Ahrens wrote many songs for the “Schoolhouse Rock” educational series in the 1970s. See the Songwriters Hall of Fame site for the full rundown.

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