Terri Lyne Carrington, George Lewis Are 2019 Doris Duke Artist Award Winners

The drummer and trombonist will receive $275,000 for their contributions to jazz

Terri Lyne Carrington (photo by Tracy Love
Terri Lyne Carrington (photo: Tracy Love)

Drummer Terri Lyne Carrington and trombonist George Lewis are recipients of the 2019 Doris Duke Artist Awards for jazz, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation announced on July 9. Joining Carrington and Lewis as award winners are accomplished artists in the fields of theater and contemporary dance.

Each artist will receive $275,000 to spend without restrictions. Of those funds, $25,000 is earmarked for savings, retirement or other later life needs.

A three-time Grammy winner, Carrington, 53, has released eight albums, including The Mosaic Project: LOVE and SOUL. That album features female musicians such as Regina Carter, Natalie Cole, Lalah Hathaway, Ingrid Jensen, Chaka Khan, Ledisi, Meshell Ndegeocello, and many others. Notably, she is the first female artist to ever win the Grammy award for Best Jazz Instrumental Album, for 2013’s Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue

Carrington has collaborated with visual artists Mickalene Thomas and Carrie Weems and has curated musical presentations at Harvard University, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and the John F. Kennedy Center. She was appointed professor at the Berklee College of Music in 2005 and is currently the founder and artistic director of the school’s Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice, whose mission is to recruit, teach, mentor ,and advocate for young musicians seeking to study jazz with gender equity as a guiding principle.

She is also the artistic director for the Berklee Summer Jazz Workshop and co-artistic director of the Carr Center in Detroit. The forthcoming release of her new band, Terri Lyne Carrington and Social Science, is titled Waiting Game;a double album featuring pianist Aaron Parks and guitarist Matt Stevens, it comments on social justice issues.   

George E. Lewis at “A Musical Tribute to Dr. Muhal Richard Abrams”; the Community Church of New York – Jan. 29, 2018 (Credit: Alan Nahigian)
George E. Lewis at “A Musical Tribute to Dr. Muhal Richard Abrams,” the Community Church of New York – Jan. 29, 2018 (Credit: Alan Nahigian)

Lewis, 66, is a professor and chair in composition at Columbia University who has garnered many accolades over his career. JazzTimes described Lewis as “an artistic academic, a soulful technologist” in his Overdue Ovation. In addition to his academic success, he’s an accomplished composer, trombonist, and scholar in the fields of improvisation and experimental music. Lewis’ music has been performed by ensembles all over the world, and he has worked with the world’s most exploratory musicians, including Muhal Richard Abrams, Fred Anderson, Derek Bailey, Anthony Braxton, Count Basie, Anthony Davis, Gil Evans, Douglas Ewart Steve Lacy, Joëlle Léandre, Misha Mengelberg, Roscoe Mitchell, Evan Parker, Sam Rivers, Irene Schweizer, and John Zorn.

He’s also a pioneer in creating and performing music with interactive computer software.

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A member of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians since 1971, Lewis published a history of the organization in 2008 called A Power Stronger Than Itself: The AACM and American Experimental Music. It received the 2009 American Book Award.  

His other honors include a 2002 MacArthur Fellowship, a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship, a 2011 United States Artists Fellowship, a 1999 Alpert Award in the Arts, fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and honorary doctorates from the University of Edinburgh, New College of Florida and Harvard University. Since 2004, Lewis has been the Edwin H. Case Professor of American Music at Columbia University.

In addition to Lewis and Carrington, the 2019 Doris Duke Artists include choreographer Donald Byrd, performance artist Michelle Ellsworth, and playwrights Marcus Gardley and Lauren Yee. 

“We could not be more excited to share the names of the 2019 Doris Duke Artists,” said Maurine Knighton, program director for the arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. “They have earned this recognition through an incredibly rigorous nomination and review process conducted by a body of their peers. The work of these six artists has inspired creativity, new ideas, and awe across the arts sector and beyond. With the money from this award, they will be able to invest in their own well-being in ways that create the right conditions for them to continue to flourish and do their best work.”