Thom Bell, the third party behind the Sound of Philadelphia along with Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, will receive the Recording Academy's Trustees Award in the new year, the organization announced this week.
The Trustees Award, a Special Merit Award determined by a vote from the Grammy Awards organizer's National Board of Trustees, honors significant contributions to the recording industry in areas outside of performance.
Part of the legendary Mighty Three Music publishing group with Gamble and Huff, Bell is known for his production and arranging work at Philadelphia International Records. Working frequently with Philly songwriter Linda Creed, Bell contributed to tracks like The Stylistics' "Stop, Look, Listen (To Your Heart)," The Spinners' "The Rubberband Man," and The Delfonics' "La-La Means I Love You."
Those and others contributed to the establishment of the Sound of Philadelphia, which rose to prominence in the 1970s. Bell won a Grammy in 1975 for "Best Producer of the Year," and was inducted into the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame in 1993 for his efforts.
Gamble and Huff, who previously received the Trustees Award in 1999, congratulated Bell in a statement.
"I personally consider him to be one of the greatest writers, arrangers, and producers of all time," Huff said.
Record executives Mo Ostin and Ralph S. Peer also will be honored with the Trustees Award. Nina Simone, who was inducted into the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame in 1994, will receive the Recording Academy's Lifetime Achievement Award.