University honour for legendary Wallington guitarist Jeff Beck
7:50am Tuesday 2nd August 2011 in News
Legendary guitarist Jeff Beck has received an honorary degree from the University of Sussex after an incredible career in music spanning nearly 50 years.
Beck, who was born in Wallington and lived on Demesne Road, spent his early years singing in a church choir before going on to form The Rumbles in neighbouring Croydon.
The six-time Grammy award winner who shot to fame as a part of 60's brit-rockers The Yardbirds is one of the few musicians to appear in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice.
Beck, 67, becomes a Doctor of Music at the University following a nomination from the Brighton Institute of Modern Music (BIMM) with whom he has been working closely with in recent years.
Bruce Dickinson, education director at BIMM, said: "Jeff Beck is as much of an inspiration to the new generation of musicians as he was in previous decades. In 2010, Jeff found time to visit BIMM and deliver a now legendary masterclass.
"Those of us present will never forget the experience, as in his hands, a borrowed standard Fender Strat and Marshall amplifier produced the most incredible guitar tone and performance we have ever heard."
He received his award from university's Chancellor the comedian and actor Sanjeev Bhaskar, before telling graduates: "If you dream of something you really like to do then I suggest you follow it. It's not about the money. It might be as elusive as the rainbow. Just stick with your dream even if it's not as rewarding financially."