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Legendary drummer Harvey Mason made Honorary Doctor of Letters by UWL

The University of West London (UWL) has conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Letters (Hon DLit) upon legendary musician and drummer, Harvey Mason - who also delivered two masterclasses for students during his recent visit to the Ealing campus.

University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Peter John, awarded the Hon DLit to Mason at a ceremony held at UWL’s award-winning Pillars Restaurant, also attended by Sara Raybould, Director of London College of Music and other members of UWL’s Vice-Chancellor Executive.

Mason - a jazz drummer who has played with artists of the calibre of Beyoncé, John Legend, Frank Sinatra and Quincy Jones, in a career spanning five decades – said that he accepted ‘this most special award’ with ‘pleasure, appreciation, gratitude and humility.’

Praising Mason’s long and significant contribution to music – which has included numerous Grammy award nominations, solo albums and film soundtracks, Sara Raybould said: ‘I am incredibly proud to present Harvey Mason with this Honorary award; Doctor of Letters of the University of West London. His motivation, generosity and creativity are inspirational and his philosophies are directly in line with those of London College of Music; underpinned by tradition, but never bound by it. Harvey Mason’s uncompromising quest for excellence has impacted the shape and form of music and musicians for decades.’

Accepting the Honorary Doctorate, Mason said: ‘My recipe for success would be talent, hard work, unwavering desire, tremendous passion, perseverance, an obvious thirst for knowledge and lastly, humility. I wish to congratulate all the graduates completing their studies here at the University of West London; you are well prepared and I wish you God’s speed as you set out to find your place in the magical musical world. I say to you; go out and make some noise.’

In his masterclasses for students which took place on the same day, Mason demonstrated his incredible dexterity, innate musicianship and sensitivity, employing every possible dynamic to demonstrate his mastery of the drums and the ease with which he played.

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