Dave Holland becomes an NEA Jazz Master

Dave Holland

Wolverhampton born bassist Dave Holland and vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater are among the recipients of America's highest jazz honour.

Wolverhampton born, three time Grammy Award-winning jazz bassist Dave Holland is to receive one of America's highest jazz honours when he is made a 2017 NEA Jazz Master. America’s National Endowment for the Arts is recognising Holland’s vast contribution to music, jazz in particular. 

Miles Davis gave Dave Holland a place in his famous ‘Lost Quintet’ after seeing him play in London in the late 1960s. He played alongside Wayne Shorter, Chick Corea and Jack DeJohnette touring Miles’ seminal ’Bitches Brew’ album and more. In 2002 he debuted a recording from his Big Band to great acclaim and the subsequent second album in 2005 won him a Grammy for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.

Jazz FM favourite, vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater is also a recipient. She becomes only the 19th woman to be made an NEA Jazz Master in 34 years.

Bridgewater said, ”I never dreamed I would one day be named an NEA Jazz Master, as so few women hold this distinction. I’ve fought long and hard to preserve my musical integrity, to garner respect in this male-dominated jazz world. Being selected as a 2017 NEA Jazz Master recipient is, therefore, an affirmation that I was right to push the proverbial envelope."

Pianist Dick Hyman, who works closely with Woody Allen, Hammond organist Dr Lonnie Smith and jazz historian and writer Ira Gitler are also all recognised for their exceptional contributions to the advancement of jazz. 

The ceremony will take place in April 2017 at the The John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC. The honour also comes with a $25,000 prize.

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