BMI represents songwriters and provides payment and support for their endeavors, and along with ASCAP, its success has helped the publishing sector remain one of the most vital parts of the record biz. Both organizations sure know how to throw a party, that's for sure. Last night, at the BMI Pop Awards at Beverly Wilshire, songwriting royalty were treated to an awards show that climaxed with a tribute to the evening's “BMI Icon” David Foster with performances by Keri Hilson, Chaka Khan and Brian McKnight. It was quite stirring.
So how did we follow up the sequined gown gaggles and dramatic crooning? How else? With sequined g-strings and head-banging!
It's what award winner Lady Gaga might have done, right? Gaga (who wasn't there), Jason Derülo and JR Rotem all became the “BMI Pop Songwriters of the Year,” as they each contributed four songs to the year's most-performed list. Interestingly, Gaga is one of the few artists that doesn't have a football team's worth of writers concocting her tracks. Like rival ASCAP's awards show last month, the stage was trampled by multiple contributors for nearly every song.
Foster's intro proved he was definitely deserving of the icon title. He's written some memorable classics including big ones for Chicago, Kenny Logins, Celine Dion, and Josh Groban, stuff that's so omni-dramatic and heartfelt it would be schmaltzy if not for his gift for rapturous builds and choruses. The real surprise was seeing just how funky and soulful the guy can be. He wrote Cheryl Lynn's infectious “To Be Real,” Earth Wind and Fire's “After The Love has Gone” and Chaka's “Through the Fire,” the last two of which were performed last night.
See a full recap of the event (including Foster's brilliant “Top 10 Tips For Songwriters” acceptance speech) here.
From fiery divas to fireworks, it was off to Crazy Girls to catch two comely LA bands: Hammered Satin and The Fantastic Harlan Jones Band. Satin was celebrating its guitarists's birthday (with a fireworks laden beer box instead of a cake), and provided its usual rollicking retro-loco glam rock in the ultimate setting.
First time catching Harlan Jones and we gotta give it up, putting the word “fantastic” in your name is risky, but they live up to it. Featuring former members of other Stonesy/garagey bands in LA such as Denim and The Superbees, the quintet's got a strong set of rhythmic, twangy-riff lifting, 70's flaired stomps.
Check these bluesy boys out with another of our faves, The Woolly Bandits, this Sat., May 21, at On The Rox.
They didn't even need the half-naked tattoo'd tart (whom we shot when she was fresh off the bus from Portland!) writhing behind them, but when you play at Crazy Girls, that's whatcha get, and we'll admit it, it's pretty much impossible not to be entertained by the sensory overload in this Hollywood tit-pit. Strip club or no, the lighting and sound here are as good as many traditional rock clubs. Actually, the backlighting is better. Take a look at shots from the club in tomorrow's Nightranger slideshow.
And lest you think the vibe is completely sexist, check out CG's brand new night this Monday, “Girls, Girls, Girls” which features formidable female fronted bands courtesy of “professional party animals” Brent X Mendoza, DJ Tuesdae & Genie Sanchez. Invite here.
Follow Nightranger (Lina Lecaro) on Twitter at @L_in_A.