The honor was given almost at the tail end of Black Music Month for what the artists have accomplished in the past and still to this day.
“The Rhapsody & Rhythm honorees span the breadth of African-American music, representing disco, hip-hop, and funk,” said H. Beecher Hicks III, NMAAM’s President, and CEO in a press statement. “Their artistry is innovative and influential, carrying an impact that can still be felt today.”
Grammy-winning producer Shannon Sanders hosted the event, and a tribute performance was given to Gaynor — who’s best known for her 1978 anthem “I Will Survive” — by singer Avery Sunshine.
Fatman Scoop, as well as DJ Mars, honored Fresh with a performance, and artists Mr. Talkbox, Louis York and the Shindellas performed for Clinton.
Fresh — who came into fame with rapper Slick Rick in the ’80s with songs like “The Show” and “La Di Da Di” — posted news about the Legend’s Gala Thursday, just before the ceremony began.