As there has always been a connection between poetry and music, Harvard University turned to a jazz legend as its 2014 Professor of Poetry. According to Rollingstone.com on Jan. 10, Harvard has appointed Herbie Hancock to deliver six lectures on a variety of topics related to poetry.
The 73-year-old will join Robert Frost, T.S. Eliot and Leonard Bernstein amongst other luminaries who have held the honorary professorship that was first introduced in 1925. One of the lectures will be titled "The Wisdom of Miles Davis" which will be both interesting and intriguing since Hancock did have a personal relationship with Davis as the two played together in the sixties.
Hancock, who attributed "life itself" has is personal muse, spoke about the honor in an interview with Radio 5:
"The reason that I was chosen for this position was only partially because of music. They also realized that I'm a goodwill ambassador to [the United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture], which is partly to do with cultural diplomacy which I'm addressing in one of my lectures."
But his musical expertise and how it relates to poetry will be a great experience for Hancock and those who attend the lectures at Harvard University. Over the years Hancock has won 15 Grammys for his musical work and was recently praised by Snoop Dogg at the Kennedy Center Honors Gala for a pioneer who "invented hip-hop." The praise further establishes the wide range of style, expression and inventiveness of Herbie Hancock.