Hip-Hop icon Jay Z has become the first rapper in history to land a nomination for the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
The “Empire State of Mind” star, real name Shawn Carter, was named to the longlist for the Class of 2017 in his first year of eligibility.
Nominees are considered for induction if they have been writing hits for at least 20 years. Jay Z released his classic debut album, Reasonable Doubt, in 1996.
He joins the likes of Madonna, George Michael, Gloria Estefan, Bryan Adams, Chicago, Kool & the Gang, Cat Stevens, Sly Stone, and Vince Gill as performing nominees, while producers Kenneth ‘Babyface’ Edmonds, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and Max Martin are among the non-performing songwriters up for possible induction next year, according to The Associated Press.
Hall of Fame members will have until December 16 to cast their votes, and the top five picks will be announced in the New Year.
The 48th annual Induction and Awards Dinner will take place in New York City on June 5, 2017.
The Class of 2016 was made up of Nile Rodgers, Marvin Gaye, Tom Petty, and Elvis Costello, while Chip Taylor and Rodgers’ late Chic bandmate, Bernard Edwards, were also celebrated at the June 2016 ceremony.
Previous inductees include Hank Williams, Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Carole King, Paul McCartney, Lionel Richie, David Bowie, James Brown, and Dolly Parton.
The Songwriters Hall of Fame, which honours the masters behind the music industry’s biggest hits, was founded in 1969 by songwriter Johnny Mercer and music publishers Abe Olman and Howie Richmond.