Page last updated at 17:39 GMT, Monday, 22 December 2008

Four Tops to get lifetime Grammy

The Four Tops
The Four Tops helped define the Motown sound

Motown legends The Four Tops are to receive a Grammy Award for lifetime achievement, organisers have said.

The group, best known for hits such as I Can't Help Myself and Reach Out I'll Be There will be given the honour along with late Rat Pack star Dean Martin.

Gene Autry, the Blind Boys Of Alabama, Hank Jones, Tom Paxton and Brenda Lee will also receive career awards.

The prizes will be given at a ceremony in Los Angeles on 7 February, one day before the 51st annual Grammy Awards.

'Outstanding accomplishments'

Neil Portnow, President of The Recording Academy - which runs the Grammys - called the recipients a "prestigious group of legendary performers, creative architects and technical visionaries".

He added: "Their outstanding accomplishments, legendary passion and artistry have positively affected our culture and will continue to influence and inspire generations to come."

Dean Martin
Dean Martin died on Christmas Day in 1995

Previous honourees include Burt Bacharach, Doris Day and Bob Dylan's former backing group, The Band.

Meanwhile, jazz record producer George Avakian, composer Elliott Carter, and producer and songwriter Allen Toussaint have been selected to receive the Trustees Award.

The award recognises contributions made by people who work in production.

Clarence "Leo" Fender, inventor of the Fender guitar, and Universal Audio will receive the technical Grammy award.

Nominations for the main awards ceremony have already been announced. US rapper Lil' Wayne leads the pack with eight nods, including album of the year for Tha Carter III.

British rock band Coldplay were hot on his tail with seven nominations.

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Reuters Four Tops, Dean Martin among Grammy honorees - 25 hrs ago
Hollywood Reporter Career nods span musical boundaries - 31 hrs ago
Los Angeles Daily News 'Lifetime Achievement Awards' to Autry, Martin - 32 hrs ago
Billboard Grammys To Honor Autry, Four Tops, Martin - 36 hrs ago
Variety Grammy honors Autry, Blind Boys - 38 hrs ago

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