Music Legend Dionne Warwick Shines During Atlantic City Walk of Fame Induction


Dionne Warwick honored at Atlantic City Walk of Fame induction on Friday, April 26. Photo by Daniel Winner.


ATLANTIC CITY — Six-time Grammy Award winner Dionne Warwick‘s reputation in the music industry is that of grace and class.

Even while casually dressed in a cap to accept her induction into the Atlantic City Walk of Fame on Friday (April 26), that grace and class came shining through for many of her adoring fans and past recipients who came to Brighton Park, off the city’s famed Boardwalk, to see her.


Warwick, 83, who has been showered with many honors during her long musical career — from becoming a Kennedy Center honoree in December to being added to the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1985 — was genuinely humbled at her latest platitudes.

Marshall Thompson of the Chi-Lites speaks at the Atlantic City Walk of Fame induction. Photo by Daniel Winner.

Warwick was honored with the soul group the Chi-Lites during the presentation by the National Rhythm & Blues Music Society, headed by Vanessa Jordan. Original member Marshall Thompson accepted the award on behalf of the Chi-Lites.

Both shared smiles and accepted cheers from fans as they watched their Walk of Fame plaques be unveiled in Brighton Park behind the Claridge Hotel under a cloudless blue sky Friday afternoon.

“I am so thrilled that you thought enough of me to make a decision to plant me into your ground — alive,” Warwick said with a smile, drawing laughs and cheers from the crowd. “It’s quite an honor to be recognized in this fashion. I must say that.”

Warwick was one of the top 40 top-charting American artists from 1955 through 1999 and the second most-charted female in the rock era from 1955 to 1999. An amazing 56 of her singles over that time made the Billboard Hot 100, the music industry’s Bible for record sales and airplay.

Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small Sr. addressing AC Walk of Fame. Photo by Daniel Winner.

From 1962 to 1998, 12 of those songs cracked the Top 10 on the Billboard charts. Warwick ranked No. 74 of Billboard’s Hot 100 Greatest Artists of all time.

One of the most memorable hits came in 1985, when she joined with other superstars Elton John, Gladys Knight and Stevie Wonder to record the hit “That’s What Friends Are For.” The song, made to raise awareness of the AIDS crisis, shot up to No. 1 on the Billboard charts and became one of the most recognized songs of the decade.

“I have not been in Atlantic City for quite a while,” said Warwick, who performed a show at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Atlantic City Friday night. “I want to thank you very much for continuing to embrace me. God bless you and thank you.”

Members of the Delfonics and other groups shared their memories of working with Thompson and the Chi-Lites. The stories ranged from being protected by police from screaming female fans to allowing Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5 to share their dressing room before they became famous.

“We didn’t have no money but we were here,” Thompson said. “Two years later we had a hit record. God is really good. I wanted to say to the audience, it’s because of you that I’m doing what I do today. If it wasn’t for you buying all of those records, I would be shining shoes.”

Dionne Warwick walks up to the microphone at Walk of Fame induction. Photo by Daniel Winner.

Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small Sr. spoke at the event, which was also attended by City Council President Aaron “Sporty” Randolph and Vice President Kaleem Shabazz.

The National R&B Music Society Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving, promoting and honoring Classic Soul/R&B Music and the Legends from the 60s, 70s, & 80s that paved the way for artists today.

Additional pictures to be added.

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