Prolific songwriter, musician, recording artist, and ever-whimsical storyteller John Prine was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame's prestigious ranks at the 50th Annual Songwriters Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City yesterday, on Thursday, June 13.
Prine has influenced multiple generations with his witty songwriting and sincere social commentary for almost half a century. He has been recognized by the GRAMMY Awards 11 times, winning twice, and received the PEN/Song Lyrics Award in 2016. Last year alone, Prine was bestowed with the BMI Troubadour Award, the Americana Artist of the Year Award, and a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nomination. This year, he is up for Album of the Year and Song of the Year at the Americana Honors & Awards for his 2018 album The Tree of Forgiveness and its single "Summer's End." Prine was also was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2003.
Fellow Downtown clients Benny Blanco and Jason Isbell were among the presenters at the Songwriters Hall of Fame gala — with Prine's longtime friend and collaborator Bonnie Raitt inducting the legendary artist.
The night prior, Downtown celebrated Prine's musical legacy with a showcase at PUBLIC Arts benefiting 826NYC, the New York chapter of the largest non-profit youth writing network in the country. Held on the eve of John’s induction, the event featured an all-star lineup of performers including Antibalas, Sara Bareilles, Stephen Colbert, John Dickerson, Norah Jones, Natalie Merchant, Nathaniel Rateliff, and The War and Treaty, each doing a special acoustic interpretation of their favorite Prine song. The man of the hour capped off the night with his own performance of his classic “Paradise,” with Raitt and Keith Sykes joining him on stage.
Downtown congratulates John on his induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, one of the most esteemed organizations honoring and championing the legacies of songwriters.
Photos: Kevin Scanlon