The BET Networks had on Friday announced it, saying “Anita Baker is a legendary R&B singer whose soulful voice takes control of any room she’s in.
“Baker’s music resonated with audiences of all ages and races alike. With her extensive body of work, which spans decades, Baker continues to be one of the most legendary artists of all time.”
However, knowing it was going to happen took no shine off the moment when it did happen. Still glittering and as beautiful as ever, Baker came on stage to the adulation of all present.
The eight-time Grammy winner and owner of seven platinum albums dominated the R&B charts from the early ’80s to mid-90s,and is known for ballads such as ‘Body & Soul’, ‘Just Because’, and ‘Giving You The Best That I Got’.
The 60-year-old used her speech to encourage the artists in the room to keep music alive.
“I would ask that the music be allowed to play, that singers are allowed to sing, and rappers are allowed to rap, and poets are allowed to rhyme,” said Baker.
Malian Mamoudou Gassama was honoured as a humanitarian hero as he continues to be hailed for his heroic efforts that led to saving a child from death in France.
Baker’s recognition is a fitting end to a nearly four-decade-long music career that inspired generations of musicians and was packed full with awards.