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Doc Rock


As we’ve reported previously, this past Friday, July 15, Jon Lord was awarded a honorary Doctor of Music degree by his home town’s University of Leicester. Local press covers the event; Leicester Mercury writes:

Archbishop Desmond Tutu was in Leicester on Friday. You may have heard about it, seeing as news of his honorary degree from the University of Leicester seemed to be plastered everywhere.

Slipping under the media radar, happy to play a low-key second fiddle to the man from South Africa, was Jon Lord; Leicester-born keyboard maestro in Deep Purple and Whitesnake, bona-fide rock ‘n’ roll star and, pleasingly, an allround decent, stand-up chap. Tutu may have stolen the next day’s headlines, with his smiley charm and theological bonhomie – “he was nice, but he smelled of churches,” said one onlooker – but the real story here was Lord and the homecoming of a musical hero, now the proud holder of an honorary Doctorate in Music from the University of his home town. “It means,” says Lord, old eyes lighting up with infectious enthusiasm, “that even though I am clearly not, I can call myself a doctor. Imagine that.”

Read more in Leicester Mercury

This is Lecestershire:

A rock legend has spoken of his delight at being made an honourary doctor of music by the University of Leicester.

Former Deep Purple and Whitesnake keyboard player Jon Lord, 70, had the doctorate conferred upon him in a ceremony at De Montfort Hall yesterday.

Jon, who played Hammond organ on iconic tracks such as Smoke on the Water, said: “It’s indescribable. It was such a surprise when they offered the honour to me a couple of months back – I was genuinely and overwhelmingly thrilled.”

Read more in This is Lecestershire.

Update (July 26): University of Leicester has posted a video of the ceremony:

Thanks to Yvonne Osthausen for the info.

8 Comments to “Doc Rock”:

  1. 1
    Karl-Heinz says:

    If someone deserves a honary doctorship, then it is Doctor Jon Lord. Congratulations.


  2. 2
    Tracy Heyder (aka Zero the Hero) says:

    A well earned stature and obviously an honor, truly related to this fine musician’s skill, pashion and contribution to the music world. Much more suited and relative than the lame nonsense ‘Knighting’ of Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Elton John by the Brits…

    Good for you JON! Good for Purple.


  3. 3
    Gary says:

    Congratulations to Dr. Jon Lord ! How many other bands can claim that such a talented / knowledgible/ influential musician graced their ranks and academically acknowledged for their achievements ?

    I’m proud to be a Deep Purple fan !


  4. 4
    George Martin says:

    Way to go Jon! He really deserves this. Notice he always speaks with such great dignity. Truly a real professional. Many more years Jon, God Bless.

  5. 5
    Roberto says:

    still noone recongize JON LORD as the first man to inroduce classical music in rock and to invent a new hammond sound….

  6. 6
    Larry R. Toering says:

    Doctors usually get less than they deserve, kudos to Dr. Lord!

  7. 7
    Eddie6string says:

    Immensely deserved!

  8. 8
    Tracy Heyder (Zero the Hero) says:

    Wow, I bet he wishes he was awarded the title of “Doctor of Cancer” instead. If he was half the Cancer Doctor he is a Keyboard Player, he could treat himself and would be good as new. All we can hope is that it is treatable and he is able to recover soon. Cancer isn’t a fun way to go in any form. I’m pulling for you Maestro Lord. Hope you find the time to look to the Real Lord before your demise. Then your fate would be the Grand Stage in Heaven where your Hammond would truly be in its rightful place.


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