Good thing Erykah Badu wasn’t around to pick up her Album of the Year trophy at Tuesday night’s Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards – she’d have to mail it to Jill Scott.
Show organizers said Thursday (August 30) that Badu’s Mama’s Gun was erroneously announced as Soul/R&B Album of the Year during the taping of the ceremony at Santa Monica (California) Civic Auditorium, and the award actually belongs to Scott for Who Is Jill Scott? Words & Sounds Vol. 1.
Katie Jones, supervising producer at Don Cornelius Productions, said the winner was “read incorrectly” during the award’s presentation. She said she had not yet determined how the error occurred.
Fans watching the ceremony at home when it airs in syndication this weekend will see an edited version of the presentation with an announcer replacing Badu’s name with Scott’s, according to Karen Sundell, a show spokesperson at the Rogers & Cowan publicity firm. Both Scott and Badu have been informed of the change, she said.
A source, who requested anonymity, claimed organizers intentionally switched the names because Scott left the ceremony to catch a flight before the category was presented. “It [looks bad] for her to be there all night and then not be around to accept her final award,” the source said. Reporters hoping to interview Scott Tuesday night were told the singer had to leave the ceremony early for the airport.
Sundell had no comment on the allegation, saying, “A mistake was made and has been fixed.” A spokesperson for Scott could not be reached.
The Album of the Year honor gave Scott a total of four Lady of Soul awards. She also received awards for Best R&B/Soul or Rap New Artist (Solo) and Best R&B/Soul Single (Solo) for “A Long Walk” as well as the Aretha Franklin Award for Entertainer of the Year.
Badu did not attend the ceremony because she is on tour. Her Motown spokesperson confirmed the singer had been informed she did not win a Lady of Soul award after all and said Badu had no immediate comment. Badu’s official Web site still featured a post as of late Thursday afternoon congratulating her on the award.