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Columbia Honors Cecil Taylor

Pianist, composer and free-jazz luminary Cecil Taylor (pictured) recently received an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Columbia University in New York City. The school recognized Taylor as part of the Commencement Exercises for its 249th academic year. Taylor was the only musician bestowed with an honorary doctorate at the ceremony. Other honorees include poet Maya Angelou, author and literary critic Sir Frank Kermode and Constance Baker Motley, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York’s senior judge.

In other Cecil Taylor/NYC news, the pianist will team with drummer Elvin Jones for two nights at the Blue Note in New York June 17 and 18. The shows will start at 10:30 p.m. That week at the Blue Note more or less belongs to Jones, who opens a six-night run with his band at the club June 17. For more info, visit

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