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Clive Davis and the Recording Academy on Tuesday announced that exiting X Factor judge and Epic Records chairman L.A. Reid will be honored at next year’s annual pre-Grammy gala.
Reid will be presented with the President’s Merit Award in recognition of his “significant contributions to the music industry and the impact his efforts have had on music and the business of music,” a release said. Previous recipients have included Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss, Richard Branson, Davis, Ahmet Ertegun, David Geffen, Berry Gordy, Doug Morris and Mo Ostin.
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The event will be held on the eve of the Grammys, Saturday, Feb. 9, at the Beverly Hilton. While no performers or additional VIP guests have yet been announced, the event long has attracted A-list talent. Last year, Tony Bennett, Alicia Keys, Miranda Lambert, Diana Krall, Pitbull and Ne-Yo all performed, while Diana Ross hit the stage.
The gala also will mark the one-year anniversary of Whitney Houston‘s death. Last year’s soiree turned out to be a somber event, as the iconic singer died in her Beverly Hilton hotel room less than 24 hours before she was scheduled to attend.
Tuesday’s announcement comes just one week after Reid revealed that he would not be returning as a judge for The X Factor‘s third season, instead investing renewed energy and vigor into his full-time gig of running the Sony music label. “Of course, I will miss the show,” Reid said in a statement. “In my opinion, Simon Cowell attracts the best talent, but I’m looking forward to getting back to my core business and the responsibility of running Epic Records.”
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Throughout Reid’s career, the 56-year-old has produced and co-written more than 30 No. 1 singles and earned three Grammys. He is credited with helping to build the careers of Toni Braxton, OutKast, TLC, Usher, Pink, Ciara, Avril Lavigne, Mariah Carey, Kanye West, Bon Jovi, The Killers, Fall Out Boy, Justin Bieber and Rihanna.
“We are thrilled to once again collaborate with Clive Davis on this legendary gala filled with unique performances and stories,” said Recording Academy president and CEO Neil Portnow. “With his keen ability to foster and guide young artists, Antonio ‘L.A.’ Reid has brought to the world some of the most accomplished and beloved musicians. We are delighted and excited to pay tribute to this luminary who has shaped the contemporary music landscape with his passion, diversity, dedication and musical judgment.”
Email: Sophie.Schillaci@THR.com; Twitter: @SophieSchillaci
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