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SONA 2022 Warrior Awards; GRAMMY Award-Winner P!nk, Sony Music Publishing Chairman/CEO Jon Platt, Songwriter/Producer busbee Honored at Skirball Gala July 23rd

Photo credit: Lester Cohen

LOS ANGELES, CA, July 26, 2022 — Songwriters of North America (SONA) held its second annual SONA Warrior Awards at an in-person dinner gala at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. This year’s honorees were GRAMMY Award-winning songwriter and recording artist P!nk, Sony Music Publishing Chairman and CEO Jon Platt, and pop-country songwriter busbee, who passed away in 2019 at the age of 43. The SONA Warrior Awards offer a platform for music creators to celebrate the immense talent and hard work of their peers. While each of these awardees is known for their high-profile accomplishments within the industry, the Warrior Awards provide a unique opportunity to amplify their tireless efforts in the advocacy space.

The evening featured the premiere of the pre-recorded virtual awards show combined with in-person acceptances by honorees Jon Platt and Jess Busbee, widow of honoree busbee, as well as live entertainment. The full virtual show, currently live-streaming on Mandolin.com until July 30 for ticket buyers, features guest appearances by Carole King, Usher, Ed Sheeran, Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town, Senator Cory Booker, Pharrell, Kara DioGuardi and many others.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE EVENT:

Hosted by SONA Executive Director and Board Chair, Emmy and Peabody Award-winning songwriter Michelle Lewis
Honoree acceptances by Sony Music Publishing Chairman/CEO Jon Platt and Jess Busbee on behalf of honoree busbee
Performance by 2022 GRAMMY Award-winning songwriter/producer Autumn Rowe (“Freedom” written with Jon Batiste)
Performance by singer/songwriter/producer and GRAMMY nominee Nikki Flores singing P!nk megahit “Try,” co-written by P!nk’s fellow honoree busbee, also a go-to songwriter having written for Christina Aguilera, Nas, Hayley Kiyoko, JoJo
Performances by the renowned acapella group the SoCal VoCals of USC

ABOUT SONA:
SONA is a leading advocacy organization formed by professional songwriters to advocate for fair pay, safety, equality and a collective voice for songwriters everywhere. In the past seven plus years, SONA has played a pivotal role in crafting, lobbying and passage of landmark copyright legislation including The Music Modernization Act. (MMA)

SONA Executive Director Michelle Lewis’ opening remarks at the second annual SONA Warrior Awards set a theme to the evening and to the mission of SONA: “Put.Songwriters.First.”

“The Warrior Awards is our way of shining a spotlight on people who use their elevated positions in the music industry to advocate for songwriters and to make positive change in the world.”

“Put songwriters first, because everything starts with the song…Without it, the producer has nothing to produce, the performing artist has nothing to perform, the publisher has nothing to publish, the record label has nothing to record, the digital service provider has nothing to provide and the music-lover has nothing to love.”

“Put songwriters first! Change the narrative about digital streaming royalties that we’ve been talking about for over a decade! Because, between those outdated laws and regulations that govern 75 percent of a songwriter’s income, the imbalance between the sound recording and the copyright, the fraction-of-a-penny rates paid out for digital streaming, and the weighted rate payout formula based on market share, we end up at the very back of the line when we should be at the front. Stop sending us running between the labels and the services begging for crumbs. This is a much bigger conversation that needs to be had by EVERYONE who relies on songs and songwriters as part of their business model.”

AMONG VIPS IN ATTENDANCE:
Evan Bogart – Songwriter/producer and LA Chapter president of the Recording Academy
ZZ Ward – Artist/songwriter
Pinar Toprak – Composer (“Captain Marvel”)
Apollonia – Singer/actor
Lauren Christy – Songwriter/producer (The Matrix) – (Avril Lavigne, Jason Mraz, etc.)
Bonnie McKee – Songwriter/artist
Mozella – Songwriter/artist
Damon Gabriel – Influencer/curators
Yovanna Ventura – Model/actor
Zulay Henao – Film /TV actor
Kevin Connolly – Actor
Jax – Songwriter/ TikTok influencer
Sam Hollander: Hit songwriter
Kizzo – Producer
Jean Baptiste Kouane – Songwriter/producer
Trey Campbell – Songwriter
Wayne Wilkins – Songwriter/producer
Steph Jones – Singer/songwriter
Roahn Hylton – Producer

The 2022 SONA Warrior Awards were sponsored by:
AAM, Amazon Music, ASCAP, Apple, BMG Music Publishing, BMI, City National Bank, DiMA, Downtown Music Holdings, Hipgnosis Songs, Global Music Rights, Kobalt Music Publishing, The MLC, National Music Publishers Association, peermusic, PEN Music Group, PRS, The Recording Academy, Reservoir Media, SESAC, Sony Music Publishing, Spirit Music Group, The Foundation To Be Named, Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner Chappell Music.

Visit SONA’s official website wearesona.com