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Bill Withers, Gary Numan among honorees at UK's prestigious Ivor Novello Awards

Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty ImagesThe 2017 Ivor Novello Awards were held Thursday in London, and among the honorees at the ceremony were Bill Withers and New Wave veteran Gary Numan.

Withers received the Special International Award, which goes to a songwriter from outside of the U.K. who has had an outstanding career while being a major influence on the British music industry. Funk legend George Clinton was on hand to present the award to Withers.

BBC News reports, that while accepting the honor, Bill recited a special poem written for the event. He also shared a recollection of meeting Paul McCartney, who called him a "raconteur," a term with which he wasn't familiar. The 78-year-old singer/songwriter Withers admitted that, after looking up the word in the dictionary, he was surprised to learn it had nothing to do with raccoons.

Numan, best known for his synth-driven 1979 hit "Cars," was presented with the Ivors Inspiration Award, which is given to a musician whose work has encouraged the creativity of other artists.

During his acceptance speech, Numan said, "I've been doing this a long time and this is my proudest moment."

You can check out the full list of award winners, visit

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