Justin Timberlake Sheds a Tear During Induction Into Memphis Music Hall of Fame
By Desiree Murphy
Justin Timberlake may be a Grammy and Emmy Award-winning singer, but he hasn't forgotten his roots.
On Saturday, the 34-year-old singer became the youngest inductee into the Memphis Music Hall of Fame. He took the stage at The Cannon Center of Performing Arts in Memphis, Tennessee -- the city he grew up in -- to deliver a speech that was both funny and emotional.
"This is the f---ing coolest thing that has ever happened to me," Timberlake said. "The Grammys are political. The Emmys are political. Memphis is not political. And don't get me started on Hollywood… Memphis is the global capital of soul, and that soul is not just in the music, it's in the people."
"When people ask me where I'm from I say, 'Memphis.' Not where do you live right now, but where are you from," he continued. "My favorite part about this city is we don't apologize for who we are, and that's who this city has taught me to be."
Timberlake was humbled to receive the award, even choking up a few times during his nearly 30-minute speech. He made note that he was "honored" to be at the event, where musical legends like The Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards were in attendance. Along with Timberlake, Scotty Moore, Alberta Hunter, Al Jackson, Jr., Memphis Slim, Charlie Rich and Sam Moore of Sam & Dave were also inducted.
"I am truly honored to be able to stand on the shoulders of all these legends that I grew up listening to and I grew up admiring to say that I stand alongside them now," Timberlake said, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd.
Before Timberlake took the stage to an audience of thousands, Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley, Three 6 Mafia founder DJ Paul and Timberlake's close friend, Jimmy Fallon, made some remarks during the "Suit & Tie" singer's introduction.
"Who better to induct him than me … Mrs. Justin Timberlake," Fallon joked, mocking Timberlake's wife, actress Jessica Biel. "Jessica, I'm sorry. The heart wants what it wants."
The Tonight Show host continued to keep the introduction lighthearted and hilarious. "What I love about Justin is he's never forgotten where he comes from," Fallon continued. "He loves Memphis. I mean, his wife's last name is Biel. I talked him out of naming his son Barbecue. But he's passionate about his hometown."
Last month, Timberlake appeared as a guest on Fallon's talk show, and the two debuted a hilarious short titled Looks that celebrates their epic friendship. Watch the video below to see their bromance in action.