The Recording Academy™ Producers & Engineers Wing® will honor GRAMMY® Award winners Alicia Keys and Kasseem Dean, aka “Swizz Beatz,” at their annual GRAMMY Week celebration on Thursday, Jan. 25, 2018, at Rockefeller Center's iconic Rainbow Room in New York City. The prestigious, invite-only event will celebrate the artistic contributions of the Producers & Engineers Wing's professional members and will highlight the unparalleled accomplishments of Keys and Dean. The event, now in its 11th year, is well-regarded among producers and engineers as well as industry titans. GRAMMY Week culminates with the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards® on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018, airing live on the CBS Television Network, at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT.
“With multiplatinum success, fierce dedication to the craft, and unwavering support for the art of recorded sound, Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz represent the power of groundbreaking ingenuity in our creative community,” said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the Recording Academy. “Alicia and Swizz have set new precedents for excellence and their contributions are paramount. This is sure to be an unforgettable evening, and we are thrilled to be able to celebrate them together as an undeniable force in the industry.”
Fifteen-time GRAMMY Award-winning singer/songwriter/musician/producer Alicia Keys is also an accomplished actress, a New York Times best-selling author, and a powerful force in philanthropy and activism. Keys began playing classical piano at age 7 and continues to incorporate her classical background into her music, transcending genres and including gospel, jazz, blues and vintage soul, rock, and pop influences. Since the 2001 release of her debut album, Songs In A Minor, she has sold more than 30 million albums worldwide with The Diary Of Alicia Keys, Unplugged, As I Am, The Element Of Freedom, and Girl On Fire. Her critically acclaimed sixth studio album, Here, was released in November 2016. Keys' female empowerment message and hands-on approach to song creation, plus knack for crafting songs that resonate with all walks of life, have made her one of the most respected musicians of today. Her talent, deep wisdom, and playful personality have been on display for three seasons as a winning coach on “The Voice.” Keys also owns The Oven Studios, which is often used by a variety of the most prestigious recording artists.
Kasseem Dean, aka “Swizz Beatz,” is a GRAMMY Award-winning and internationally acclaimed music producer/songwriter/recording artist/global entrepreneur. While in high school, he began DJing and working at Ruff Ryder Records, where he soon produced the company's first hit, “Ruff Ryders' Anthem” by DMX. At age 23, in a joint venture with the legendary Clive Davis, Dean founded his own record label, Full Surface Records. As a producer, he has worked in multiple genres with artists such as Jay-Z, Madonna, Beyoncé, Busta Rhymes, Gwen Stefani, Kanye West, and Metallica. A renowned cultural ambassador, Dean's artistic contributions now also extend beyond music and include fashion design, business, fine art, and philanthropy. He created the global No Commission Art Fair platform that lets the artist keep 100 percent of the proceeds from their sales. To date, $5 million has been given back to these artists. Recently, Dean graduated from the three-year Harvard Business School's Owner/President Management program.
Previous honorees have included:
2009—Ahmet & Nesuhi Ertegun; Jerry Wexler; Arif Mardin & Tom Dowd
2011—T Bone Burnett
2013—Quincy Jones & Al Schmitt