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New Year Honors For Bernie Taupin, Mel B, Pauline Black Of The Selecter

Taupin, lyricist partner of Sir Elton John since their first meeting in 1967, has been awarded a CBE.

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Bernie Taupin photo: Michael Tran/Getty Images
Bernie Taupin photo: Michael Tran/Getty Images

Songwriter Bernie Taupin, lyricist partner of Sir Elton John since their first meeting in 1967, has been awarded a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s New Year’s Honors list.

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Taupin, 71, became a US citizen in 1990, and lives in Santa Barbara, California. He was inducted with John into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1992. In addition to the countless classics he has contributed lyrics to, the composer has also written for such artists as Heart, Starship, Willie Nelson, and Brian Wilson. He has also released three albums in his own name and two more with the band Farm Dogs.

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Also prominent among those in the entertainment world to be recognized in the New Year Honors is Melanie B, better known as Mel B of the Spice Girls. She receives an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) for her work as a patron for Women’s Aid, and services to charitable causes and vulnerable women. The Leeds-born singer became a patron of Women’s Aid, a group of four charities, one for each country in the United Kingdom, in 2018. The grassroots federation works to provide life-saving services and build a future where domestic abuse is not tolerated.

Sony Music Group chairman Rob Stringer is also awarded a CBE, for services to both the music industry and philanthropy. In 2021, he implemented Artists and Songwriters Forward on behalf of artists and songwriters. The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office observed that Stringer “is recognised for an exceptional and sustained contribution to the British music business as well as charity causes and tackling discrimination.

“His recent initiative to tackle racism and social injustice with a £75 million [USD $100m] Sony Music fund, which has directly benefitted UK charities working to foster equal rights and help address structural inequality, is recognised as an industry leading model.”

Pauline Black of 2-Tone hitmakers The Selecter is awarded an OBE (Order of the British Empire). In addition to her work with the band, Black has been prominent in the launch of her home city of Coventry’s cultural programme as UK City of Culture 2021. She said that the city had helped her “ultimately find my creative voice within the 2-Tone movement, which has spearheaded the musical conversation about racism and sexism for the past 42 years.”

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