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The Kennedy Center Honors Earth, Wind & Fire

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts announced the selection of five Honorees who will receive the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime artistic achievements. Recipients to be honored at the 42nd annual national celebration of the arts are: R&B collective Earth, Wind & Fire, actress Sally Field, singer Linda Ronstadt, children’s television program Sesame Street, and conductor and musical visionaryMichael Tilson Thomas.

Earth, Wind & Fire (musical group; Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Ralph Johnson)

Earth, Wind & Fire (EWF) are a music institution. Over their five-decade history, the group have sold out concerts all around the globe, scored eight Number One hits, and sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, making EWF one of the best-selling musical groups of all time. The group has won an impressive nine Grammy Awards® including one for Lifetime Achievement in 2012. In 2000, EWF was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, cementing their lasting impact on popular music.

For their record-breaking success, EWF have been awarded with Lifetime Achievement honors from ASCAP, NAACP, BET, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. EWF’s reach extends to heads of state. They have been invited to perform for Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, who said in an interview with Rolling Stone that EWF was a “rhythm and blues and pop staple.”

With a sound that blends funk, jazz, pop, soul, and R&B, EWF cannot be confined to a specific label except their own. Timeless songs have bridged the gap among generations and nationalities, whether it’s the funky and infectious “Let’s Groove,” the timeless dance classic “September,” or the heartfelt “Reasons.” EWF’s catalog of hits has become the soundtrack to many lives; now, then, and forever.

EWF’s influence has reached musical giants such as Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and Prince. Additionally, many of today’s chart-topping artists, including Kanye West, Justin Timberlake, and Alicia Keys, have hailed the band for their artistry.

The music of EWF is more alive than ever as it continues to inspire new audiences and thrill those who have been with the group from the beginning. Like the elements in its name, Earth, Wind & Fire’s music has withstood ever-changing trends in the world and shows no sign of vanishing as they continue to create uplifting music that will forever reach a sacred universal atmosphere.

Recent Kennedy Center history: Earth, Wind & Fire were among the guest cast paying tribute at the previous Kennedy Center Honors for Honoree Al Green (2014).

“Receiving the prestigious Kennedy Center Honor fills us with a lot of pride and gratitude. We have always wanted to make music that inspires and contributes to humanity, and this is acknowledgement that we have helped enrich lives and the arts.”  –Earth, Wind & Fire co-founders Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Ralph Johnson

About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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