Grammys on the Hill made its way back to The Hamilton on Tuesday, April 9 for their annual Awards show. This year, Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth and gospel legend Yolanda Adams were honored. Radio host Tommy McFly served as master of ceremonies.
As usual the night was filled with great performances. GRAMMY-winning singer, songwriter, and musician PJ Morton (Maroon 5) performed a memorable rendition of the national anthem that brought the room to its feet.
Speaker of the House, Sen.Nancy Pelosi (D-California) presented Chenoweth with her award. The actress recalled how supportive the senator has always green. After accepting her award, Chenoweth performed a duet of “For Good” with Kesaundra Haythe, a student at Duke Ellington School of the Arts. The song was from the Broadway hit, “Wicked.”
Songwriter and producer Linda Perry got members of congress to join her on stage as she sang her 90s hit “What’s Up.” Gavin DeGraw joined in as well and the lawmakers seemed to be enjoying their time in the spotlight.
R&B star Mario and actress/singer Kat Graham presented Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York) with his award. Jeffers co-sponsored the 2018 bipartisan bill with Congressmen Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who was unable to attend but Recording Academy president Neil Portnow delivered the award to Grassley earlier that day and that image appeared on screen.
Gospel icon Yolanda Adams received the Creators Leadership Award in recognition of her advocacy work. Neil Portnow presented the award, along with PJ Morton who said he grew up around Adams and affectionately called her “Aunt Yo Yo.” Adams, in a stunning yellow dress, stayed true to her gospel roots and sang, “Since the Last Time I Saw You.”
After achieving success with the passing of the Music Modernization Act, the artists headed to Capitol Hill the next day advocating for an increase in music education and continue the quest to seek ways to the rights of artists can be protected in the age of streaming.
Other artists in attendance included Brandon Victor Dixon of “Hamilton,” Kenny Lattimore, producer Steven Epstein, Jerry Harrison of Talking Heads, Americana singer/songwriter Mary Gauthier and Kacey Musgraves’ album producer Ian Fitchuck.