Liza Minnelli picks up Icon award

 Liza Minnelli

Minnelli joked onstage that her award was so heavy that “my new knee is going” Veteran US singer Liza Minnelli has picked up the Icon prize at the Silver Clef awards in central London.

Praising the organisers, music therapy charity Nordoff Robins, she said that when she felt “cranky” she “put some happy music on and it heals me up”.

Former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney was named live act of the year while Annie Lennox was recognised for her outstanding contribution to UK music.

Status Quo, meanwhile, picked up the lifetime achievement prize.

“What I wanted to say is I believe in this project more than anything I’ve heard in the last 20 years because I do believe in the healing power of music and even lyrics,” Minnelli, 65, said in her acceptance speech.

“Sometimes a lyric can completely change your mind, which is what this is about.”

Presenting the Icon award to his friend, chat show host Graham Norton said he had been a guest at her fourth wedding, in 2002, to David Gest.

The couple divorced in 2007.

“If God is good I’ll go to the next one and possibly the one after that,” Norton joked.

‘Phenomenal news’

Best newcomer Tinie Tempah, meanwhile, said winning best newcomer was “a really nice way to start the day” which would end “with a bang” when he performed at the Wireless Festival in Hyde Park later.

Asked backstage where he kept all his gongs, the double Brit Award-winner said: “I’ve got so many on my kitchen table ‘cos I’ve nowhere to put them yet but, the minute I get some space, I’m gonna do it up nice.”

McFly McFly won the digital innovation award for their website

Sir Paul, who could not attend the event, said his win – decided by public vote – was “phenomenal news”.

The 69-year-old, who has this year played in countries including Peru, Chile and Brazil, begins a US tour on 15 July at the Yankee Stadium in New York.

Canadian stars Arcade Fire were named Ambassadors of Rock, Alfie Boe won the classical award and McFly picked up the digital innovation award for their website.

DJ trio Swedish House Mafia won the international award and Biffy Clyro won best best British band.

Annie Lennox enjoyed global success with Dave Stewart in the Eurythmics with hits including Sweet Dreams before forging a career as a solo singer with songs including Walking on Broken Glass.

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