Some of the biggest names in film, television, and music gathered for a star-studded affair at the annual URBAN ONE HONORS at MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, on Thursday, December 5. Hosted by Urban One Founder and Chairwoman Cathy Hughes and actor Chris Tucker, the prestigious event celebrated the 40-year legacy of Radio One and will premiere on January 20, 2020, the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, at 8 P.M./7C on TV One. This year’s honorees included: veteran music executive Sylvia Rhone (Lifetime Achievement Honor); Grammy Award-winning recording artist and producer Missy Elliott (Music Innovation Honor); Academy Award-winning actor Jamie Foxx (Entertainment Icon Honor); Grammy Award-winning artist Chance the Rapper (Represent Change Honor); and, actor/dancer and star of “Pose,” Ryan Jamaal Swain (Represent Pride Honor). Special recognition went to music executive legend Clarence “The Black Godfather” Avant (Represent Opportunity), civil rights activist Rev. Al Sharpton (Represent Leadership) and Emmy Award-winning actor Billy Porter (Represent Excellence).
Highlights from the evening included:
- A surprise performance by Grammy Award-winning icon Anita Baker, who not only serenaded Cathy Hughes with “Giving You the Best That I Got” but also had Lalah Hathaway, Billy Porter and Jamie Foxx to join her on stage.
- Actress Corinne Foxx presenting the Entertainment Icon Honor to her father Jamie Foxx, who, during his acceptance speech, remarked that his best role ever is being a father.
- Rapper Lil’ Kim’s heartfelt presentation of the Music Innovation Honor, which brought honoree Missy Elliott to tears.
- A special musical tribute to the late, two-time Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter, James Ingram, by Ne-Yo, Eric Benét, Chanté Moore and Al B. Sure!
Additional performances from Grammy Award-winning R&B superstar Brandy, Grammy-nominated rapper Wale and new artist Jac Ross brought the audience to its feet. Special appearances by Urban One CEO Alfred Liggins, III, veteran radio personality Tom Joyner, entrepreneur and TV personality Ray J, rapper/radio host Da Brat, TV host Egypt Sherrod, comedian George Wallace, and Reach Media/Radio One personalities Russ Parr, Willie Moore, Jr., Dyana Williams, Darlene McCoy and Little Bacon Bear rounded out the show. “It is with great humility and gratitude that I acknowledge our sponsors, staff and attendees at our second annual Urban One Honors at the MGM National Harbor. We are totally aware that our 40th anniversary would not be a reality without your love and support,” said Hughes.
URBAN ONE HONORS is presented by TV One and Radio One’s Washington D.C. market’s cluster of radio stations: Majic 102.3 and 92.7, WKYS 93.9, Praise 104.1, WOL 1450, Spirit 1340, and The Team 980 and 95.9. The televised event heralds the accomplishments of individuals who have made extraordinary contributions in entertainment, media, music, education, and the community.