Run DMC are headed for another first. Since becoming the first rap group to release a gold-certified album in the US – their eponymous 1984 debut – and the first to receive a multi-platinum album certification, for 1986’s Raising Hell, they are due to be the first rappers to earn the Recording Academy’s Grammy lifetime achievement award.
“I just got a call from the Grammys!!” Joseph Simmons AKA Rev Run tweeted on Wednesday. “They shocked me!! We’re the first rappers to get this award!! Shocked! Grateful! God is good!!! I’m so honored to be a #GRAMMYs Lifetime Achievement Award recipient this year. Thank you to the Recording Academy!” Simmons and Darryl “DMC” McDaniels are the two surviving members of the group, since Jason Mizell AKAJam Master Jay was shot dead in 2002.
The rappers are due to be honoured along with late R&B singer Ruth Brown, jazz legend Herbie Hancock, R&B pioneers Earth, Wind & Fire, psych-rockers Jefferson Airplane, late Cuban salsa singer Celia Cruz, and 11-time Grammy award-winning folk and country musician Linda Ronstadt.
The Recording Academy, the organisation behind the Grammys, honours performers who are seen to have made a notable contribution to recorded music with the annual lifetime achievement award.
“Each year, the Academy has the distinct privilege of honouring those who have greatly contributed to our industry and cultural heritage, and this year we have a gifted and brilliant group of honourees,” said Neil Portnow, president and CEO of the Recording Academy. “Their exceptional accomplishments, contributions, and artistry will continue to influence and inspire generations to come.”