Up until very recently, Canadian singer-songwriter Sarah Slean had no idea that the 1970s song Wildflower, which has been covered and recorded dozens of times, was originally written and performed by British Columbia band Skylark.
She's hardly alone. Even though a Wildflower cover by Hank Crawford has been repeatedly sampled by some of hip-hop's biggest stars, including Eminem, Kanye West and Drake, most people probably couldn't say who wrote it.
Wildflower is one of several tunes that will be honoured this year by the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame.
"We're culturally only aware of the present moment but there's such a rich history there and it's a good thing to reconnect with it and celebrate it," Slean said Tuesday at a news conference to announce this year's honorees.
Robbie Robertson and Luc Plamondon will be honoured at an awards gala in Toronto on April 2, along with Pierre Letourneau, Jack Scott, Romeo Beaudry and John Stromberg. Wildflower will be recognized for the mark it made globally.
Hall of Fame president Sylvia Tyson said it'll be exicting to highlight the accomplishment of Robertson, who wrote instantly recognizable classics like The Weight and Broken Arrow.
"The Band was a landmark Canadian band. There had been previously performers and groups that became well known worldwide, but the Band somehow struck a chord with everybody - because they were like us," Tyson said.
"I think the Band became embedded in the Canadian psyche and certainly Robbie, as the premier writer of the group, his songs just resonate with everyone."
The tale of how the group of humble musicians went from obscurity to working with Bob Dylan and on to become stars in their own right is fascinating in today's era when so many acts are manufactured to produce hits, have their moment, and then disappear, she added.
"It's a very exciting story, it's the kind of thing that doesn't happen in quite the same way any more - either you're an overnight success or you're not now, it's a very different kind of world," Tyson said.
While Plamondon is not a household name in English-speaking Canada, he's one of the most respected songwriters in Quebec, said Francine Raymond, co-vice-president of the hall.
They worked together on Vivre avec celui qu'on aime, which was a hit in Quebec. Plamondon has also penned tunes for the likes of Celine Dion and Robert Charlebois.
"Everything that Luc touches with his soul and essence and talent, things just work out magically," Raymond said.
"And it happened to everyone who collaborated with him. It is just a joy to work with this man, this man is unique."
Folk music archivist and historian Edith Fowke and folklorist Helen Creighton will receive the Frank Davies Legacy Award. Music impresario Yvan Dufresne is this year's Canadian Music Publishers Association Legacy Award winner.
In addition to Wildflower, the hall is also honouring: Votre avion va-t-il au paradis? by Beaudry, Squid Jiggin' Ground by Arthur Scammell, La chanson des pissenlits by Letourneau, My Heart Cries for You by Percy Faith/Carl Sigman, Je suis cool by Gilles Valiquette, Pas besoin de frapper pour entrer by Jacques Michel, Oh What a Feeling by Kelly Jay/Roly Greenway, and When I Die by Willie Smith/Steve Kennedy.