Earth, Wind & Fire Are Officially the First Black Group Inducted into Kennedy Center Honors

Earth, Wind & Fire members Philip Bailey, Ralph Johnson and Verdine White have been inducted in the Kennedy Center Honors. Although group founder Maurice White passed away in 2016, his legacy lives on.

Earth, Wind & Fire have been a staple for the culture since their debut. Hits like “Let’s Groove,” “September,” ‘Boogie Wonderland,” and more. The group has been making music for almost 50 years, and it looks like they’ll be releasing new music soon. “We’re making a list, and checking it twice,” Bailey told Billboard. “And you’ll hear about it soon.”

“You can’t play any Earth Wind & Fire songs without Maurice’s DNA being on it, so he’s always here and we’re always celebrating him and his vision,” Johnson told Billboard. “People are still coming together and having fun.”

The Earth, Wind & Fire tribute performers included John Legend, Ne-Yo, Cynthia Erivo, and The Jonas Brothers. Other honorees included Sesame Street, singer Linda Ronstadt, Academy Award winning actress Sally Field, and conductor Michael Tilson Thomas.