Grammy Week is packed with festivities honoring the past, present and future of music. Among the biggest events put on by the Recording Academy is the 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award ceremony. Leading this year’s honorees are the queens of Motown, The Supremes. According to Variety, Diana Ross will be recognized alongside her late bandmates, Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard. The “Upside Down” singer is actually the first woman to receive the honor twice, as she got the award as a solo artist in 2012.
“Performing with two talented women, Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard, is a memory that will be in my heart forever,” Ross told Variety through her publicist. “It was a beautiful symphony. Motown was such an incredible family. I’m forever grateful for the blessed opportunity.”
Wilson’s daughter, Turkessa Ferrer-Babich, and Ballard’s daughter, Lisa Sabrina Chapman, will accept on their mothers’ behalf. While it’s lovely that they can have this moment for their moms, it does make me wonder why the Academy is just getting around to honoring The Supremes. Seriously, how are you just now giving them a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2023?
“The Lifetime Achievement Award is an acknowledgment that all three women contributed, from the very beginning of their career,” Ferrer-Babich said. “My mom knew that she was going to get this award, someday. Unfortunately, she’ll get it when she is no longer physically with us. I know, though, that she is overwhelmed with excitement that she and her sisters are getting this award. They deserved it. They worked hard and contributed so much to the music industry and the world.”
Ferrer-Babich stressed that she and Ballard’s daughters have the same bond their mothers and Diana had.
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“They’re sisters, and we’re sisters,” she said. “My mom always made sure that Flo’s daughters were included in any award ceremony.”
The Supremes are being honored alongside Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart, Nirvana, Nile Rodgers, Ma Rainey, Slick Rick and Bobby McFerrin. Though there’s usually an acknowledgment of the lifetime achievement winners during the Grammys telecast, we don’t generally get musical tributes. However, maybe this year will be the exception and we’ll get a fun Supremes moment.