Lil Baby was honored with the Black Music Action Coalition’s Quincy Jones Humanitarian Award Thursday night at the Music in Action Awards.
Presented with a congratulatory video from his mother Lachon Jones and Quality Control Group founder Pierre Thomas as well as a letter written by Quincy Jones, the rapper took to the stage in an elegant black velvet suit, which he paired with some reading glasses. The theater.
“You have not only made musical history and influenced the course of modern hip-hop, but you are using your platform to give back to the community in a meaningful way,” Jones said in his letter, which was read to the crowd by his son, Quincy Jones III.
Lil’ Baby began his succinct talk “to be recognized in music, not to mention a role model such as Quincy Jones and the Black Music Action Coalition”. “I honestly didn’t know what a humanitarian prize was, but when I looked at it and started reading, I realized that I was really a humanitarian worker.”
Other participants in the official event include G-Eazy and Tyler The Creator, who presented the Amazon Music team with a BMAC Social Impact Award – and have accepted the honor with Recording Academy and Kevin Lyles.
The rapper was honored along with many other prominent personalities and organizations in the music business including “Big John” Platt, Nicole Hannah Jones and Representative Maxine Waters at the event.
Liles, who was honored with a BMAC Social Impact Award, used his speech to advocate in support of the Artistic Restoration Protection Act (RAP), a bill introduced by Congressmen Hank Johnson and Jamal Bowman that would limit admissibility of evidence of creativity or art. Expression against an artist in court.
The proposed bill comes in light of rappers Young Thug and Gunna’s ongoing legal troubles as they both face major criminal charges. Young Thug, born in Jeffrey Williams, is currently charged with conspiracy to violate the Georgia Influential and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) and faces multiple criminal charges including participating in criminal street gang activity, violating the Georgia Controlled Substances Act, possession of a firearm while committing a felony and possession Machine gun and drug charges and others.
Juna, whose real name is Sergio Giovanni Kitchens, is accused of extortion and accused of being the leader of another metro Atlanta street gang.
“I will put aside common sense that artistic creative expression is the same thing as recognition. I will put aside the First Amendment which should protect our freedom of expression. Scholars around the world have tracked nearly 500 cases of black and brown people being subjected to double standards and treating this art as Confessions in court. It doesn’t happen if you’re white,” Lyles said.
What about Freddie Mercury? My man says, “Mama, I just killed a guy / I put a gun to his head / I pulled the trigger and he’s dead now.” Now, did we really think that Freddie Mercury would kill someone? He added. “In the meantime, I have a crew of people who can’t be parents to their kids…and they’re backed by the charge of lyrics.”
He said the Thug and Gunna case in court inspired Liles to get into the fight to protect the two men, and artists like them, from their words being manipulated by prosecutors and potentially silencing the next generation of rappers aspiring to set trends with their words. The audience.
He said, “If I need a valid cause, if I need someone who wants to lead by example – I’ll walk, I’ll run or I’ll do whatever I have to do because we’ll need to protect each other.”
John Platt of Sony Music Publishing also provided poignant remarks during his acceptance speech, reading aloud a letter written by Clarence Avant decades ago, but so meaningful today, about the need for diversity in music company boardrooms.
Additional honorees include Director David Ali (BMAC BLACK: Future. Now. Award); Amazon Music and Recording Academy (BMAC Social Impact Award); Attorney and author Brittany K. Barnett and Joy Brown of Culture Creators (BMAC Change Agent Award); Congresswoman Maxine Waters (BMAC Icon Award); and plate CEO, R&B/Hip-Hop Jill Mitchell with miscellaneous Music Executive Editor Shirley Halperin, who received the BMAC 365 Award in recognition of “a person, company, or organization that has consistently supported social change throughout the year.”
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