The BMI London Awards recognize the U.K. and European songwriters and publishers of the past year’s most-performed songs on radio and television in the United States. The performing rights organization collects license fees from businesses that use music, which it distributes as royalties to songwriters, composers & music publishers.
BMI honors songwriters who have had “a unique and indelible influence on generations of music makers” as Icons. Queen’s Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon join a list of past honorees that includes 2010 recipient Don Black, Van Morrison, Donovan, the Bee Gees, James Brown, Willie Nelson and more.
There are numerous BMI Awards between the four members of Queen, who are all songwriters with contributions to the band’s repertoire. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001, Queen received a special honor in 2003: they became the first band ever to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame as a group rather than as individuals.
Queen entered the U.K. Music Hall of Fame in 2004, while “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions” have both been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Freddie Mercury died of AIDS in 1991; the following year, remaining members orchestrated the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert for AIDS Awareness, and the Mercury Phoenix Trust (MPT) was established. To date, MPT has donated more than $15 million to the fight against AIDS around the world.
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