Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page received an honorary Doctor Of Music degree from the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston on Saturday.
The Boston Globe reports Page also delivered the commencement speech to this year’s graduates at the Agganis Arena.
The Led Zeppelin guitarist admitted that he had prepared a speech but after hearing the students pay tribute to him the night before at the annual commencement concert at the venue he tossed the speech aside, quipping, “Here I am, a busking musician trying to busk my speech.”
Page gave kudos to the students, who had played a variety of tunes for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame double inductee, including Led Zeppelin’s “Rock And Roll” and “Stairway To Heaven,” and to his fellow honorees, legendary songwriter Valerie Simpson of Ashford & Simpson, acclaimed jazz pianist Geri Allen, and Grammy-winning trumpeter-composer Thara Memory.
“The quality of musicianship that was shown last night was really moving,” Page told the students.
He offered sincere gratitude for the honor, saying, “This is absolutely so amazing, and it’s such a privilege to be a part of this and feel all the energy coming from you graduates, congratulations.”
Page joins a list of celebrated past recipients that includes Duke Ellington (the first, in 1971), Aretha Franklin, Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones, Smokey Robinson, Steven Tyler, Loretta Lynn, David Bowie, Juan Luis Guerra, Paco de Lucia, Carole King, Willie Nelson, Alison Krauss and George Clinton.
On June 2 (June 3 in North America), Page and Led Zeppelin will reissue their first three albums, each with a companion disc of bonus material
Deluxe editions of "Led Zeppelin", "Led Zeppelin II" and "Led Zeppelin III" are the first projects announced as part of an extensive reissue program that will see all nine of the band’s studio albums reissued in chronological order, each remastered by Page.
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