Trent Reznor began his career with Nine Inch Nails nearly 25 years ago (next stop, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!) Last night, Reznor received the Golden Note Award at the 29th annual ASCAP Pop Music Awards, an industry insiders event that rewards the top songwriters in the business. Also among the awardees were Bruno Mars and Max Martin.
Reznor’s Golden Note Award was for his body of work, ranging from the industrial metal he produced with NIN, such as 1994’s nearly-flawless ‘The Downward Spiral,’ to the instrumental movie projects in recent years like ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ and ‘The Social Network,’ which actually won Reznor an Academy Award.
Reznor displayed a great deal of modesty, saying, “That compliment means a lot to me [because] songwriting is a thing that I feel like I’m just getting started. I’m really starting to get the hang of it but every day is a new lesson. I’m a student here and to receive this kind of acknowledgment, it feels nice.”
Mars and his songwriting partners in the Smeezingtons won the Song of the Year honor for “Just the Way You Are,” the soaring mid-tempo ballad that got played a zillion times on the radio. Dance-pop hitmaker Max Martin captured his fifth Songwriter of the Year title, which is awarded based simply on airplay and chart success. Martin wrote 10 huge hits, including “Last Friday Night” by Katy Perry, “Fuckin’ Perfect” by Pink, and “Till the World Ends” by Britney Spears.
Carly Simon was presented with the Founders Award. She received a tribute from the Dixie Chicks’ Natalie Maines, who performed Simon’s song “That’s the Way I Always Heard it Should Be.” “It’s an incredible recognition,” Simon said. “I don’t think that you get this early in your career… It just shows me that I haven’t been underrated, that I’ve been appreciated.”
Veteran rocker Peter Frampton received the Global Impact Award. Dozens of other writers were honored with the “Most Performed Songs” title, including Katy Perry, David Guetta, Ne-Yo, Ludacris and more.