Entertainment News

  • 8 May 2014, 20:13

Chuck Berry Awarded Musical 'Nobel' Prize

Rock 'n' roll legend Chuck Berry is to be honoured with an award said to be the musical equivalent of a Nobel prize.

The 87-year-old is one of two recipients of this year's Polar Music Prize, following the likes of Sir Elton John, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.

"Chuck Berry was the rock'n'roll pioneer who turned the electric guitar into the main instrument of rock music," the jury said in its citation.

"Every riff and solo played by rock guitarists over the last 60 years contains DNA that can be traced right back to Chuck Berry."

Known for hits such as Johnny B Goode, Roll Over Beethoven and Maybellene, Berry was at the forefront of rock 'n' roll in the late 1950s.

Rolling Stones star Keith Richards once said of him: "I lifted every lick he ever played - this is the gentleman who started it all."

The Polar Music Prize was founded by the late Stig Anderson, who was the manager and publisher of Swedish pop stars Abba.

It was created to "break down musical boundaries by bringing together people from all the different worlds of music".

Berry will be handed his one million kronor (92k) award at a ceremony in Stockholm on August 26 attended by King Carl XVI of Sweden.

The other recipient is US opera and theatre director Peter Sellars, 56.

He was described by the jury as "a living definition of what the Polar Music Prize is all about: highlighting the music and presenting it in a new context".

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