The Songwriters Hall of Fame just got a little more Minnesotan - Bring Me The News

The Songwriters Hall of Fame just got a little more Minnesotan

Jimmy "Jam" Harris and Terry Lewis are among the new members of the Hall.
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There's really no denying the Hall of Fame credentials of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.

They've written and produced 16 songs that hit number 1 on the pop charts (26 on the R&B charts) ... they've had number one songs in three different decades ... five Grammy awards ... nine Songwriter of the Year awards.

And now they are among the newest members of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, which named its 2017 inductees on Wednesday.

Jam and Lewis have written and produced for both Michael and Janet Jackson and for a lot of people who only need one name: Usher, Drake, Beyonce, Rhianna, Kanye.

Other than Prince, it's likely that no one else did more to popularize the Minneapolis Sound.

And it was Prince who discovered them, making Jimmy "Jam" Harris and Terry Lewis members of The Time in 1981. They were still members of the band when they were recruited to produce the SOS Band. After a couple of their songs (including "Just Be Good to Me") topped the charts, they became full-time writers and producers instead of performers.

After the success of Janet Jackson's album Control, it seemed like all the stars of the '80s wanted to come to Minneapolis to work with Jam and Lewis at their studio, Flyte Tyme Productions.

They started their own label, Perspective Records, and launched it with the Grammy-winning first album by the Minneapolis gospel group Sounds of Blackness.

Even since they moved their studios to California in 2005, their Minnesota roots still show, most recently when they joined the other founding members of The Time for the Prince tribute at this year's Grammys.

Jimmy Jam is a past chairman of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences – the first African-American to serve in that role, his Songwriting Hall of Fame bio says.

His father, Cornbread Harris, is a locally renown jazz artist who still performs in the Twin Cities even as he approaches his 90th birthday.

A couple years ago Jam and Lewis sat down with Rolling Stone and picked 15 songs that capsulize their career.

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