Jazz legend Herbie Hancock is set to receive the George Peabody Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Music in America.
Presented annually since 1980, the George Peabody Medal is the highest honour bestowed by the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. Previous recipients include Roy Haynes, Quincy Jones, Bobby McFerrin, Wynton Marsalis, Oscar Peterson, Ella Fitzgerald and Leonard Bernstein.
“It is a true honour to present this award to Herbie Hancock, a genuine icon of contemporary American music,” said Peabody Dean Fred Bronstein. “His prolific artistic output as a solo performer, recording artist, and bandleader is remarkable, and its impact is magnified by his lifelong commitment to fostering connection among communities and understanding across cultures with his art.”
It’s the latest in a long line of awards and recognitions for the keyboardist and composer. Throughout a career of more than 60 years, Hancock has won 14 Grammy Awards and one Academy Award. He was named an NEA Jazz Master in 2004 and received the Kennedy Center Honors in 2013. He is also the chairman of the Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz (formerly known as the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz).
Hancock will speak at the Peabody Institute’s graduation ceremony on Wednesday, May 25.