T.I. is set to be honored with the first Voice of the Culture Award at the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards.
The ‘Whatever You Like’ rapper – whose real name is Clifford Joseph Harris Jr. – is being recognized with the special accolade for his 20-year career in music, movies and technology and for his philanthropy work.
The 38-year-old star – who launched the tech investment company TechCypha earlier this year – has been applauded for “helping to popularise a new sub-genre of music”.
the hip-hop producer’s “memorable” roles in movies such as ‘Entourage’, ‘Ant-Man’ and ‘Get Hard’ have also been hailed as having a “profound impact on today’s music and culture” by ASCAP’s Chairman of the Board and President Paul Williams.
The Grammy Award-winner’s Harris Community Works charity, which focuses on the disadvantaged, and work for the For The Love of Our Fathers, Alzheimer’s and dementia organization, has also been recognized.
Williams said: “T.I. has conquered the worlds of music, TV, and film, helping to popularise a new sub-genre of music in the process. His significant contributions to hip-hop music, support for other artists through his record label, philanthropy, community activism, and memorable onscreen roles have had a profound impact on today’s music and culture.
“There is no one more deserving to receive the inaugural ASCAP Voice of the Culture Award.”
The ceremony on June 20 in Los Angeles will also see Motown Records – which was launched by Berry Gordy in 1959 when it was known as Tamla Records – receive the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Heritage Award.
The iconic label – which helped launched the careers of the likes of Stevie Wonder, the late Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, and Marvin Gaye – follows in the footsteps of artists including Smokey Robinson, Chaka Khan, Earth, Wind & Fire and Bill Withers in being bestowed with the special honor.