The initial round of performers for the MusiCares Persons of the Year 2023 benefit gala — honoring Motown founder Berry Gordy and the label’s iconic artist Smokey Robinson — have been announced: Jimmie Allen, Brandi Carlile, Chloe X Halle, Sheryl Crow, Four Tops, Lalah Hathaway, The Isley Brothers, Samara Joy, John Legend, Michael Mcdonald, Pj Morton, Mumford & Sons, Lionel Richie, The Temptations, Trombone Shorty, Valerie Simpson, Molly Tuttle, Rita Wilson, Dionne Warwick, and Sebastián Yatra will all perform at the event, which takes place Friday, Feb. 3 — just two days before the Grammy Awards — at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
The event includes a reception and silent auction, followed by a dinner and tribute concert. Performers will pay tribute to the individual musical legacies created by Gordy and Robinson as well as the music they created together during their decades-long friendship.
Proceeds from the event will provide essential support for MusiCares, the Recording Academy’s charitable wing, which over the years has provided more than $100 million for music professionals’ health and human services across a spectrum of needs.
“We’re bringing together such a unique lineup of artists not only to pay tribute to Mr. Gordy, Mr. Robinson and Motown, but also to raise awareness of the critical health and social service needs within the music community,” said MusiCares Executive Director Laura Segura. “The funds raised from Persons of the Year will allow MusiCares to continue to provide vital services throughout the year to the music community and continue to serve those who make the songs and events we all love possible.”
“I am so excited to share the always wonderful MusiCares event with my best friend Smokey Robinson and I can’t wait to hear these wonderful artists celebrate the Motown music,” says Berry Gordy, founder of Motown. “I’m so excited for this year’s MusiCares lineup. These artists are my friends and I not only love them, but I’m honored that they will be performing my music, along with hits from the Motown catalogue,” added Smokey Robinson.
Since 1991, money raised from this gala goes toward MusiCares programs and services that assist the music community, including physical and mental health, addiction recovery, preventative clinics, unforeseen personal emergencies, and disaster relief. The safety of the honorees, guests, performers, and staff is our first priority. The event will follow all necessary COVID-19 precautions, safety guidelines and requirements set forth by health officials.
This year’s event would not be possible without the generous support of sponsors, including AEG, ELS Studio 3D Premium Audio, Meta, United Airlines, Wasserman Foundation, and product donations from Grey Goose Vodka, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Fiji Water.
“We are thrilled to see such an incredible array of talented performers coming together to honor Smokey and Berry, two legends who have helped define modern music,” said Harvey Mason jr., CEO of the Recording Academy. “This celebration spotlights MusiCares’ ongoing commitment to serve all music people and we look forward to an unforgettable night.”
Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson join a list of recent MusiCares honorees including Joni Mitchell, Fleetwood Mac, Dolly Parton, and Aerosmith.
The event will again be produced by live event broadcast outfit Lewis & Clark, made up of Joe Lewis and R.A. Clark. Fellow Detroit native, Greg Phillinganes, will join the special evening as musical director.
Tables are available for purchase at http://personoftheyear.musicares.org/.