Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones will be honoured with the Gold Award at the 2017 Jazz FM Awards, run by the UK jazz broadcaster, on 25 April. The ceremony will take place on the 100th anniversary of Ella Fitzgerald’s birth at Shoreditch Town Hall, in London’s East End.
Impulse!/Verve will release Watts’ new live album with the Danish Radio Big Band, Charlie Watts Meets the Danish Radio Big Band, on 21 April. The Stones themselves have two nominations at the awards, their Blue & Lonesome album prompting nods for Album of the Year and Blues Artist of the Year.
“I am very grateful to be honoured by Jazz FM for my contribution to jazz and blues,” said the revered drummer. “I’ve always loved and been influenced by the music and its players. It was one of the reasons I wanted to be a musician myself. It’s still important that we continue to support this music to ensure it lives on for the next generations.”
Hosted by one of Jazz FM’s founding presenters, Jez Nelson, the event will include a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald by Laura Mvula, nominated for Soul Artist of the Year. US saxophonist Donny McCaslin — who played on David Bowie’s Blackstar and has two nominations, including International Jazz Artist of the Year — will perform.
Georgie Fame, who will receive the PPL Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his remarkable 50-year-plus career, will also give a performance at the Jazz FM event. Guy Barker will head up his band, which will feature Alec Dankworth, Jim Watson and James Powell.
The 2017 Jazz FM Awards also include nominations for Gregory Porter, William Bell, Wayne Shorter, Madeleine Peyroux, Kurt Elling, Robert Glasper, Anderson .Paak, Soweto Kinch and many others.