The 27th Annual Trumpet Awards television taping took place in Atlanta. The Red Carpet was stunning and highlighted a long line of who’s who in today’s entertainment industry. NAACP Image Award-winning actress Wendy Raquel Robinson and GRAMMY Award-nominated R&B singer Tank hosted the 2019 Bounce Trumpet Awards, during an exciting night of inspiration, history and crowd-rousing performances celebrating African-American achievements and contributions.
The gala black-tie ceremony, held at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center in Atlanta showcased and introduced some of the hottest and most successful talent in the entertainment industry. Created in 1993 by Founder, Xernona Clayton, the event has blossomed into one of the premiere television events for Bounce TV. Clayton stated, “It teaches young people that if you watch maybe you too can do the same things and discover and contribute.” In front of an immaculately dressed audience, of all ages, the prestigious 2019 Trumpet Awards highlighted African American accomplishments and contributions. Clayton went on to comment, “When you put this whole picture together it’s like a puzzle. When you put all the pieces together, you say WOW what a vast contribution our people have made.”
GRAMMY Award-winner India Arie took the stage by storm when she opened this production. The high-energy stage was stunning with powerful lighting and beautiful costumes. Many industry insiders including Actor Louis Gossett, Jr., Rapper Da Brat, and Gospel Recording Artist Kim Burrell were in attendance.
Just some of the evening’s highlights were The Trailblazer Award being presented to GRAMMY Award-nominated rapper MC Lyte. Long considered one of hip-hops pioneer feminists, as she paved the way for future female artists. MC Lyte told some of her younger fans, “You are too young to make permanent decisions.”
This year’s Trumpet Awards have something for all ages. 11-year-old JD McCrary was honored with the Rising Star Award. He offered these encouraging words, “You’re never too young to change the world. Never quit. Never stop believing in your dreams”
The Vanguard Award was presented to New York fashion designer and haberdasher Dapper Dan (Daniel Day). He commented, “The hardest graduation is graduating from the corner.”
The Education Excellence Award was presented to educator Tim King, President and CEO of Urban Prep Academies, a nonprofit organization that provides high-quality and comprehensive college-preparatory educational experience for young men resulting in graduates succeeding in college. King encourages us to “Stand up in protest.”
The Music Excellence Award was presented to four-time GRAMMY Award-winning record producer, rapper and songwriter Rodney Jerkins aka Darkchild. The Living Legend/Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to actor, comedian, film director and writer Robert Townsend.
There was a powerful musical tribute to Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin and dynamic poetry renderings encouraging us to Dream in Black Excellence.
The inaugural Xernona Clayton Award was elegantly presented to GRAMMY Award-winning rapper, actor, entrepreneur and activist Tip T.I. Harris by Trumpet Awards founder and civil rights leader Ms.Clayton herself. Harris was recognized for his extensive charitable work and numerous contributions to economic development and job creation within his hometown of Atlanta – near Bankhead. T.I. commented, “It’s an act of GOD. He has truly been at work in my life.” He vows to continue to be a voice for the voiceless.
Ms. Xernona Clayton is proud of the Trumpet Awards. She says, “I feel like the expansion just grows. Learning more and more about people who made contributions that you didn’t know about.” She sponsored “Daughters Without Mothers” to attend this event and encourages us to “Give people a 2nd time”.