Jermaine Dupri is making history as the second rap act ever to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall Fame.
Following last year’s inductee JAY-Z, J.D. joins the 2018 class, which also includes John Mellencamp, Alan Jackson, Kool & the Gang, Allee Willis, Bill Anderson, and Steve Dorff.
“I can’t fucking believe it,” Dupri wrote under a celebratory video himself screaming with joy. “This what all the long nights and early mornings is all about.”
Dupri earned his distinction in the non-performing category for his work behind the scenes. He has famously co-written and/or produced a slew hits throughout his career, including Mariah Carey’s “We Belong Together” and “Always Be My Baby,” Usher’s “Burn,” Alicia Keys’ “Girlfriend,” and many more.
Aside from a solo rap career, Dupri has also been an influential businessman. His So So Def imprint has launched and/or elevated the careers Bow Wow, Xscape, Jagged Edge, and Kris Kross.
The organization’s president and CEO Linda Moran joined co-chairs Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff in celebrating this year’s honorees. “The 2018 roster Songwriters Hall Fame inductees is a prodigious representation creators cross-genre hits, certain to resonate with everyone,” they said in a joint statement ( Billboard). “Each year, the slate songwriters we induct is more diverse and illustrative the history and contributions that we strive to acknowledge and honor.”
The 49th Annual Songwriters Hall Fame Induction and Awards Dinner is set to take place at the Marriott Marquis Hotel on June 14.