New York, NY, Sept. 22, 2015—“People get ready,” says Altheida Mayfield, echoing one of her late husband’s best known and most enduring songs.
The Songwriters Hall of Fame (SHOF), beginning in 2016, will include a Curtis Mayfield Award in its scholarship program as part of its Annual Induction & Awards Gala week of events held June 9 in New York City, it was announced today by Linda Moran, SHOF President and CEO.
The Curtis Mayfield Award will recognize a promising singer/songwriter whose work reflects the inspiration, spirit and soul of Curtis Mayfield.
“It’s time to celebrate and re-evaluate Curtis’ legacy,” adds Mrs. Mayfield. “For years, too many others have tried to claim what he alone did-he was a genius, always stood on his own.”
New recording projects, a documentary and a feature film are also expected next year.
A newly discovered cache of material - songs, cassettes, DVDs, memorabilia, and repackaging of classic material - is being prepared, timed for a 60th anniversary celebration of the Grammy® winner, multiple Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame member (solo as well as group) and one of Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
Mayfield, who wrote over 1,700 songs, died in 1999 after a four decade career at the top of his game as label owner, singer, songwriter, producer, multi-instrumentalist, funk/soul innovator and social activist. Curtis was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2000.
His last decade was spent as a quadriplegic. “Broke his spine, but not his spirit,” says Altheida Mayfield, his wife of more than 30 years and keeper of guardian of All Things Curtis, along with sons, Kirk and Cheaa.
Mayfield started writing a different kind of soul music, one that crossed more than just musical boundaries, songs such as “Keep On Pushin’” and “People Get Ready,” reflecting his awareness of political and social concerns among black people.
Regarding those recording his songs, the line forms on the left: Bruce Springsteen, Elton John, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, Steppenwolf, the Staple Singers, Rod Stewart, Eric Clapton, Lauren Hill, Aretha Franklin, Herbie Hancock, Fishbone, Sinead O’Connor, UB40, The Jam.