BMI will celebrate Toby Keith at the 70th annual BMI Country Awards by presenting him with the BMI Icon Award.
Held at BMI’s Nashville office on Nov. 8, the ceremony will be hosted by BMI President and CEO Mike O’Neill and BMI Vice President, Creative, Nashville Clay Bradley. During the evening, BMI will also crown the Country Songwriter, Song and Publisher of the Year, as well as salute the writers and publishers of the 50 most-performed songs of the year from BMI’s country catalog.
The BMI Icon Award is given to exceptional songwriters in recognition of their influence on generations of creators. Keith will join an impressive list of fellow recipients, including Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Kris Kristofferson, Hank Williams, Jr., Stevie Nicks, Little Richard, Patti Labelle, James Brown and more.
“We are honored to present Toby Keith with this year’s BMI Icon Award. Since the release of his single ‘Should’ve Been A Cowboy’ in 1993, Toby has been the gold standard of songwriting in the modern era of country music,” Bradley shares. “Toby is not only a stellar songwriter, musician and producer whose songs have amassed millions of performances; he is also a true humanitarian. With 11 USO tours under his belt, he continues to commit to honoring and serving our troops worldwide. No one is more deserving of this honor.”
In 2021, Keith was bestowed the National Medal of Arts, inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, and honored with the ACM’s Merle Haggard Spirit Award. He has received the BMI Country Songwriter of the Year award three times, and his hit single “As Good As I Once Was” was awarded BMI’s Country Song of the Year in 2006.
Keith also achieved quite the songwriting feat as he wrote a No. 1 hit every year for 20 straight years, among them being “How Do You Like Me Now?!,” “Courtesy of the Red, White, & Blue (The Angry American),” “I Love This Bar,” “Beer For My Horses” and “As Good As I Once Was.” In 2018, he celebrated the 25th anniversary of his debut No. 1 single “Should’ve Been A Cowboy” with the re-release of his debut album.
Throughout his career, Keith has sold more than 40 million albums and has had 32 singles hit No. 1. As a songwriter, he’s notched 26 No. 1s, 11 of which he wrote on his own. Altogether, he has garnered more than 10 billion streams and 100 million radio spins.
Outside of music, Keith’s annual golf classics fund the Toby Keith Foundation and OK Kids Korral, a cost-free home for families of children dealing with critical illnesses. Additionally, in 2014, he was given the Spirit of the USO Award for his work with the organization, which has included 11 tours and more than 285 events.
More details regarding the upcoming 2022 BMI Country Awards will be announced in the coming weeks.
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