On June 12, the National Endowment for the Arts announced the recipients of the 2018 NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship—the nation’s highest honor in jazz—during Pat Metheny’s performance with Antonio Sanchez, Linda May Han Oh and Gwilym Simcock at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of the DC Jazz Festival. This year’s honorees are guitarist and composer Metheny, pianist and composer JoAnne Brackeen, vocalist Dianne Reeves and club owner and producer Todd Barkan. Each receives a $25,000 award and will be honored at a tribute concert on April 16, 2018 in recognition of their lifetime achievements and contributions to jazz.
“The NEA Jazz Masters represent the very pinnacle of talent, creativity, innovation and vision,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu in a press release sent to JazzTimes. “We look forward to celebrating these four new Jazz Masters and their many contributions to jazz.”