NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ John Hiatt, whose rootsy songs have been recorded by artists as diverse as Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Willie Nelson and B.B. King, will receive the Americana Music Association's lifetime achievement award for songwriting.
The AMA announced the selection Thursday and will present the honor to Hiatt during its Sept. 18 awards show at the Ryman Auditorium.
"It's a privilege to honor John Hiatt," said Jed Hilly, the group's executive director. "He is the essence of what the Americana songwriter award is all about — a true artist, a performer and songwriter whose work is steeped in integrity."
Past recipients include Nelson, Rodney Crowell, Guy Clark, Cowboy Jack Clement, John Prine and Billy Joe Shaver.
Born and raised in Indianapolis, Hiatt moved to Nashville when he was 18 and got a songwriting job with Tree Publishing.
He signed with Epic Records and released his debut album "Hangin' Around the Observatory" in 1974. Neither that album nor the follow-up sold well and the label dropped him, but one of the tracks, "Sure As I'm Sittin' Here," became a hit for Three Dog Night.
After some label changes, Hiatt found his niche with 1987's "Bring the Family," a loose, rootsy outing on A&M Records that's largely defined his sound ever since. The album found modest chart success, as did the follow-up, "Slow Turning."
By 1990, other artists were dipping into his catalog, solidifying his reputation as a songwriter's songwriter. Bonnie Raitt had one of the biggest hits of her career with Hiatt's "Thing Called Love" in 1989.
His new album, "Same Old Man," hits stores May 27.
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Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.