Smokey Robinson receives the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song Friday night in a new PBS special.
Robinson, a legend for such classics as "The Tracks of My Tears", "Crusin'", "I Second That Emotion", "The Tears of a Clown" and many more, will be honored tonight on PBS. In a new special called Smokey Robinson: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, the Motown icon will receive the distinguished Gershwin Prize and be entertained by special tributes from dozens of music artists.
Musicians performing special tributes for Robinson include Aloe Blacc, Gallant, CeeLo Green, JoJo, Ledisi, Tegan Marie, Kip Moore, Corinne Bailey Rae, Esperanza Spalding, The Tenors, Joe Walsh and BeBe Winans, with Samuel L. Jackson serving as host. Robinson will also sing during the special.
"Smokey Robinson's career has transcended his roots in rhythm and blues to make an enormous impact on American popular music and culture," said Paula A. Kerger, president and CEO of PBS in a statement. "As part of our ongoing commitment to offer the best arts programming on television, PBS and our member stations are honored to recognize his musical impact and share his cultural legacy with all Americans."
"Smokey Robinson's music has enhanced the lives of Americans and people worldwide and resonates across generations," added Patricia Harrison, president and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. "CPB is pleased to support the broadcast of the Gershwin Prize honoring his enduring contributions to our musical heritage."
Smokey Robinson: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song airs from 9-11 p.m. ET/PT on PBS. The special may be uploaded the following day on the PBS website, for those who didn't get a chance to watch it live.
To live tweet and follow along with others watching Smokey Robinson: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, use hashtag #PBSGershwin on Twitter.