Ledisi to Receive Honorary Doctorate From Berklee College of Music

Ledisi will be presented with an honorary degree from Berklee College of Music.

The Grammy-winning vocalist will receive an honorary Doctor of Music at Berklee’s 2024 commencement ceremony, which will be held Saturday, May 11, at 10 a.m. at Boston University’s Agganis Arena.

Ledisi, who is currently an artist in residence with the Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice, will be joined by fellow honorees rap legend Q-Tip and salsa icon Gilberto Santa Rosa. This year’s recipients will be celebrated for their “invaluable contributions to the worlds of music and philanthropy.”

Past honorary doctorate recipients include Aretha Franklin, Duke Ellington, John Legend, Missy Elliott, Robert Flack, and Usher, among others. The latter two artists were honored at Berklee’s 2023 commencement. 

Courtesy of Ledisi

“Wow….It’s an honor to be called Professor for the past two years and growing with my colleagues. Now an Honorary Doctorate from @berkleecollege,” Ledisi wrote in an Instagram post. “Thank You to everyone at @berkleecollege my mentors @terrilynecarrington @ajatheethnomusicologist @jazzandgenderjustice the students and colleagues for being on this journey with me. What an honor to be amongst the GREATS!”

She continued, “The last pic is little me with one of my music teachers after my first concert with the New Orleans Symphony back in the day. Little me pushes me to keep exploring. I am so proud of my weird little self. Thank You God. Your plan was much bigger.”

Ledisi will receive her honorary degree following her headlining Good Life Tour, which wraps up April 14 in Oakland, California.

The Good Life Tour is in support of Ledisi’s 11th album, Good Life, which was released March 1 via Listen Back Entertainment/BMG.

Ledisi Good Life
Listen Back Entertainment/BMG

The 13-track set includes the singles “I Need To Know,” “Sell Me No Dreams” and “Perfect Stranger” featuring Kenny Lattimore. The former track, released in January 2023 as the lead single, reached No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult R&B Airplay chart.

Speaking on her new album, Ledisi told Rated R&B, “Good Life is a celebration of life’s joy, love, and resilience. It captures unique moments in a musical journey that mirrors the human experience. Join me in finding beauty in our shared humanity through every note and lyric.”

In June, Ledisi will perform at the Orlando Funk Fest in Orlando, Florida. Charlie Wilson, Faith Evans, Jagged Edge and The-Dream are also on the lineup, among others. 

See Ledisi’s Instagram post below.