Metallica to Perform at Award Ceremony Honoring Elton John and Bernie Taupin at the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize


Photo 24705234 | Metallica © Yakub88 | Dreamstime.com

Photo 24705234 | Metallica © Yakub88 | Dreamstime.com

Metallica will join Garth Brooks, Annie Lennox, Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, and others for the at the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize tribute concert and award presentation to Elton John And Bernie Taupin on March 20. PBS stations nationwide will premiere the concert on Monday, April 8, at 8 PM ET (check local listings), available via broadcast and streaming on PBS.org and the PBS App. In an interview with Howard Stern in 2023, Metallica’s James Hetfield called “Candle In The Wind” by John and Taupin was one of the “greatest songs ever.”

Metallica commented:

We are beyond excited and proud to have been invited to perform at a very special event honoring the legendary songwriting team of Elton John and Bernie Taupin as they are presented with the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

We are traveling to Washington, DC, next month to join Garth Brooks, Annie Lennox, Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, and others for the tribute concert and award presentation on March 20. PBS stations nationwide will premiere the concert on Monday, April 8, at 8 PM ET (check local listings), available via broadcast and streaming on PBS.org and the PBS App.

Elton and Bernie have been collaborating for 56 years and counting, and together, they have penned some of our lifetime’s most memorable and influential songs. We are thrilled to celebrate this honor with them, and we look forward to an incredible evening of unique performances from their remarkable collection of songs.

From the Library of Congress press release:

Artists to Celebrate Elton John and Bernie Taupin Receiving the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize

Lineup Includes Garth Brooks, Brandi Carlile, Annie Lennox, Metallica, Maren Morris, Billy Porter, Charlie Puth and Jacob Lusk of Gabriels, Premiering April 8 on PBS

Artists from across the musical spectrum will join the national library and U.S. leaders to honor the great songwriting duo of Elton John and Bernie Taupin in the nation’s capital on Wednesday, March 20, as they are awarded the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song during an all-star tribute concert.

The lineup will include performances by 2020 Gershwin Prize honoree Garth Brooks, Brandi Carlile, Annie Lennox, Metallica, Maren Morris, Billy Porter, Charlie Puth and Jacob Lusk of Gabriels, along with appearances by John and Taupin. Porter will host the television event. The concert is by invitation only.

PBS stations nationwide will premiere the concert — “Elton John & Bernie Taupin: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song” — at 8 p.m. ET on Monday, April 8 (check local listings), available via broadcast and streaming on PBS.org and the PBS App as part of the co-produced Emmy Award-winning music series. It will also be available to U.S. Department of Defense locations around the world via the American Forces Network.

Taupin will also appear at the Library of Congress on Thursday, March 21, at 7 p.m. ET as part of the Live! at the Library series in conversation with Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. The event is open to the public. Register for tickets here.

A once-in-a-lifetime meeting brought John, a young piano player, and lyricist Taupin together in 1967, and they have forged a songwriting partnership that continues after more than 50 years.

“Your Song,” “Tiny Dancer,” “Rocket Man” “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me,” and “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” are just a few songs they wrote together that became timeless standards. Not to mention the fun they had with “Bennie and The Jets” and “Crocodile Rock,” which became their first No. 1 single in the U.S. in 1973.

“Elton John and Bernie Taupin have written some of the most memorable songs of our lives. Their careers stand out for the quality and broad appeal of their music and their influence on their fellow artists,” Hayden said. “More than 50 years ago, they came from across the pond to win over Americans and audiences worldwide with their beautiful songs and rock anthems. We’re proud to honor Elton and Bernie with the Gershwin Prize for their incredible impact on generations of music lovers.”

About the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song

Bestowed in recognition of the legendary songwriting team of George and Ira Gershwin, the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song is the nation’s highest award for influence, impact and achievement in popular music. The honoree is selected by the Librarian of Congress in consultation with a board of scholars, producers, performers, songwriters and music specialists. Previous recipients are Paul Simon; Stevie Wonder; Sir Paul McCartney; songwriting duo Burt Bacharach and Hal David; Carole King; Billy Joel; Willie Nelson; Smokey Robinson; Tony Bennett; Emilio and Gloria Estefan; Garth Brooks; Lionel Richie; and Joni Mitchell.

Established in 2007, the prize honors living musical artists whose contributions in the field of popular song exemplify the standard of excellence associated with George and Ira Gershwin. Criteria for selection include: artistic merit; influence in promoting music as a vehicle of cultural understanding; impact and achievement in entertaining and informing audiences; and inspiring new generations of musicians.

The Gershwin name is used in connection with the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song courtesy of the families of George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin. GERSHWIN® is a registered trademark of Gershwin Enterprises.

“Elton John & Bernie Taupin: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song” is a co-production of WETA Washington, D.C.; Ken Ehrlich Productions, Inc.; and the Library of Congress.

Major corporate funding is provided by Wells Fargo. Additional corporate funding is provided by The Boeing Company, Universal Music Group, and Otsuka. Major funding is also provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional funding is provided by AARP; The Leonore S. Gershwin Trust; the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers; Katy & Ken Menges; and FTS International, LLC. Travel is provided by United Airlines. Hotel accomodations are provided by Waldorf Astoria Washington, D.C.

About the Library of Congress

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States — and extensive materials from around the world — both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov; access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov; and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

 

About Ken Ehrlich Productions, Inc.

Ken Ehrlich Productions, led by founder and president Ken Ehrlich, is the leading production company in Los Angeles, producing television, specials, series and events for more than 40 years. Ken Ehrlich Productions has produced the Annual GRAMMY Awards, Emmy Awards and concert specials. The company has co-produced a number of specials in the “In Performance at the White House” series for PBS, most recently “In Performance at the White House: Spirit of the Season” (2021). In 2023, Ehrlich continued his nearly 50-year history with PBS by producing the Emmy-winning Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song that honored Joni Mitchell. The company has also produced such varied events as the annual Global Citizens events in Central Park and the Women’s Cancer Research Fund gala. Additionally, it has produced and directed Las Vegas residencies for Celine Dion, Mariah Carey and John Fogerty. Clients include CBS, NBC and ABC, along with artists including Celine Dion, The Rolling Stones, Ricky Martin, and Jennifer Lopez, among others.

 

About WETA

WETA is the leading public broadcaster in the nation’s capital, serving Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia with educational initiatives and with high-quality programming on television, radio and digital. WETA Washington, D.C., is the second-largest producing station for public television in the United States, with news and public affairs programs including “PBS NewsHour, “PBS News Weekend” and “Washington Week with The Atlantic;” films by Ken Burns and Florentine Films, such as “The American Buffalo” and “Leonardo da Vinci”; series and documentaries by Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., including “Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr.” and “Gospel”; performance specials including the “National Memorial Day Concert” and “A Capitol Fourth”; and health content from Well Beings, a multiplatform campaign. Sharon Percy Rockefeller is the president and CEO. More information on WETA and its programs and services is available at weta.org. Visit facebook.com/wetatvfm on Facebook.

About PBS

PBS, with more than 330 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and digital content. Each month, PBS reaches over 42 million adults on linear primetime television, more than 15 million users on PBS-owned streaming platforms, and 56 million people view PBS content on social media, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature, and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front-row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’s broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS Learning Media for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. As the number one educational media brand, PBS KIDS helps children 2-8 build critical skills, enabling them to find success in school and life. Delivered through member stations, PBS KIDS offers high-quality content on TV — including a PBS KIDS channel — and streaming free on pbskids.org and the PBS KIDS Video app, games on the PBS KIDS Games app, and in communities across America. More information about PBS is available at PBS.org, one of the leading dot-org websites on the internet, and Facebook and Instagram, or through our apps for mobile and connected devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at pbs.org/pressroom or by following PBS Communications on X (formerly Twitter).