Music producer Berry Gordy will be honoured with the prestigious Pioneer Award at the upcoming Songwriters Hall of Fame gala.

The Motown record label founder will pick up the prize during the organisation's 44th annual induction ceremony in New York City on 13 June (13).

A statement from chairman Jimmy Webb reads, "Think about it, he pioneered a marketplace for African American artistry and then he invited the world in to enjoy it. Berry was way ahead of his time; his young and immaculately groomed and dressed artists were among the first to receive media training. Berry Gordy and the Motown sound are essential to the American music story."

The accolade was established last year (12) and was awarded to late folk star Woody Guthrie.