Legendary musical artists Felton Pilate and Michael Cooper of Confunkshun receive honorary doctorates

Felton Pilate and Michael Cooper of Confunkshun holding their honorary doctorates. (Photo credit – Donna Dymally)

Left to right: Moshe Lewis, Desirae L. Benson, Jennifer Pilate, Felton Pilate, Michael Cooper, Marion Cooper and Dr. Kenneth Curry (Photo credit: Donna Dymally)

A proud moment in history (Photo credit-Donna Dymally)

Fellow musicians receive major accolades after fifty-four years of performing together

I am grateful to receive this honorary doctorate. I wish my late mom, dad and sister could have been there to see this happen. I see it as a beacon for what remains for me to do.

—Felton Pilate

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, USA, November 9, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ — Two incredible music industry legends celebrated their success in style on Saturday, November 5 at the Grammy Museum in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. Both Felton Pilate and Michael Cooper who are original members of the Funk group known as Confunkshun, were surrounded by friends, family and fans from around the world when they were pleasantly surprised by not one, but two types of awards that recognized them as pillars of inspiration for the entertainment industry and communities everywhere.

“An Intimate Evening with Felton Pilate” was hosted by Pilate’s wife, Jennifer, in honor of his seventieth birthday. The star-studded red carpet extravaganza took place at the Clive Davis Theater inside the Grammy Museum. The evening kicked off with celebrities coming in to enjoy appetizers and shared picture-perfect moments among the crowd as they graced the red carpet in their evening attire. Once in the theater, a tone of genuine admiration filled the room as Pilate was introduced by “We Luvv Rare Grooves” host Clifton Moseley, who then presented a beautiful Pilate tribute music video highlighting the many songs he wrote for Confunkshun. This was followed by an onstage interview where the pair discussed Pilate’s incredible work. All guests were also entertained by Pilate who performed several songs including two from the new album Confunkshun Christmas. The evening continued with Music & Medicine host Moshe Lewis presenting stellar performances by the band’s iconic Janice Marie Johnson, “Taste of Honey”, soulful Michael Cooper, and Felton and Jennifer Pilate who were wowed the crowd with several classic duets.

To crown the ceremony, Pilate’s publicist, Desirae L. Benson took the stage to let all the guests know that the night wasn’t over and there were some special surprises in store for everyone. She then summoned Dr. Kenneth Curry to join her on stage where he explained to the curious crowd exactly why he was there. Once he explained that he would be presenting Pilate and Cooper with honorary Doctorates of Humane Letters from the Christian Bible Institute under Dr. Tony V. Lewis, the shock on Pilate and Cooper’s faces was priceless. The guests went wild and started cheering on the two men as they took the stage to join their wives who were standing there as well. They had no idea this was going to happen; all they knew was that they were there to celebrate Pilate’s birthday. Pilate expressed his thoughts and said, “I felt confusion, shock and disbelief when it became clear what was going on. I had to turn my back on the audience for a while to try to controlling and hiding the tears, it didn’t work, I was overwhelmed with emotion.” Cooper was equally surprised and explained, “I was completely caught off guard during the introductions and preparation for the event which I thought was just a birthday party for Felton. It turned out to be more than I could have imagined. with a doctorate for my contribution to music was completely overwhelming to me.”

About the rewards:

This special doctorate is awarded to those who have distinguished themselves through their humanitarian and philanthropic contributions to society. Not only that, but both men have been notable and highly influential throughout their respective careers. Pilate shared his thoughts and said, “Sharing what I’ve learned from both sides of the recording console has always felt like what’s meant to happen. I believe it’s our responsibility to give back as much as we can.” Pilate and Cooper went above and beyond for decades, so while they were surprised in the moment, as was the entire theater of the attendees, it was certainly a sense of expected honor and respect that was publicly given to two wonderful human beings. The gentlemen also received Presidential Lifetime Achievement Awards for their lifetime of service through music and more. It is the most prestigious and has been awarded to a select few Americans for over 4,000 hours of extraordinary service. Cooper said, “The title of Doctor will take some getting used to. Receiving the Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award signed by Joseph R. Biden was incredible and overwhelming.”

About Confunkshun:

Formerly known as (Project Soul) Confunkshun is an American R&B and funk band whose popularity began in the mid-1970s and continued into the 1980s. Influences included Earth, Wind and Fire ; Commodores; Shaka Khan; and Sly and the Family Stone. Signed to Mercury Records in 1976, ConFunkShun enjoyed a decade of successful national and international touring, eleven chart-topping albums and numerous hit singles, including a Billboard magazine hit single “Number One With A Bullet” on the Top R&B Singles. Recently, Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak, the magical duo known as Silk Sonic, covered ConFunkShun’s ballad, “Love’s Train.” The original song was released by the band 40 years ago and Michael Cooper and Felton Pilate are credited with writing it. Silk Sonic’s cover of the song went to number one on the Billboard chart for over 15 weeks. It sparked an even bigger fire for Confunkshun in the entertainment industry, inspired more touring for the band, and more fans from all walks of life and of all ages.

To learn more, visit: http://www.confunkshunusa.com

About Felton Pilate:

Felton Pilate is best known as the lead singer of Confunkshun, an Old School R&B group formed in 1974 in Memphis, TN. Pilate’s accolades include record producer, songwriter, and recording artist with Diamond Platinum (US) sales status and numerous albums that sold Gold, Platinum, Multi-Platinum, and Mega-Platinum; participated in and contributed to numerous Grammy-winning and nominated recording projects; Sound engineer, mixer and mastering engineer. He has over 45 years of industry history as an internationally acclaimed lead R&B artist, recording studio owner and manager, having trained many other eventual Grammy-winning record producers.

To find out more, visit: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felton_Pilate

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