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Herbie Hancock’s thriving career that has spanned more than seven decades as a musician, composer, professor, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, father, husband and innovator.
Now in the fifth decade of his professional life, Hancock remains where he has always been: at the forefront of world culture, technology, business and music. In addition to being recognized as a legendary pianist and composer, he has been an integral part of every popular music movement since the 1960’s. An enormous influence on both acoustic and electric jazz, R&B and hip-hop, Hancock’s ongoing exploration of different musical genres has garnered him fourteen Grammy Awards as well as an Academy Award.
Hancock is an undeniable music genius, from his beginnings as a child prodigy and his work in Miles Davis’s second great quintet, to his innovations as the leader of his own groundbreaking sextet and his collaborations with Wayne Shorter and Joni Mitchell and Stevie Wonder.
Hancock received an Academy Award for his Round Midnight film score and 14 Grammy Awards, including Album Of The Year for "River: The Joni Letters," and two 2011 Grammy Awards for the recently released globally collaborative CD, "The Imagine Project." Many of his compositions, including "Canteloupe Island," "Maiden Voyage," "Watermelon Man" and "Chameleon," are modern standards.
Hancock currently serves as Creative Chair for Jazz for the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association and as Institute Chairman of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. He is a founder of The International Committee of Artists for Peace (ICAP), and in 2011 was given the “Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres” by French Prime Minister Francois Fillon. During that same year, Hancock was also named a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador by UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, and in December of 2013, received a Kennedy Center Honor. In 2014 Hancock was named the 2014 Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard University, and lectured for six weeks on “The Ethics of Jazz.”
In October, Viking Press will publish Hancock’s memoir “Possibilities,” in which he shares his musical influences, colorful behind-the-scenes stories, his long and happy marriage, and how Buddhism inspires him creatively and personally.