Wendy Maeda/Globe staff
Jimmy Page kept his remarks to a short and sweet five minutes at the Berklee College of Music commencement ceremony Saturday morning at the Agganis Arena.
The Led Zeppelin guitarist was on hand to receive an honorary doctorate and admitted that he had prepared a speech but after hearing the students pay tribute to him the night before at the annual commencement concert at the venue he tossed the speech aside, quipping, “Here I am, a busking musician trying to busk my speech.”
Page gave kudos to the students, who had played a variety of tunes for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame double inductee, including Led Zeppelin’s “Rock and Roll” and “Stairway to Heaven,” and to his fellow honorees, legendary songwriter Valerie Simpson of Ashford & Simpson, acclaimed jazz pianist Geri Allen, and Grammy-winning trumpeter-composer Thara Memory. “The quality of musicianship that was shown last night was really moving,” Page told the students.
He offered sincere gratitude for the honor, saying, “This is absolutely so amazing, and it’s such a privilege to be a part of this and feel all the energy coming from you graduates, congratulations.”
Page, a mostly self-taught musician, shared stories of his pre-fame sojourn as a session musician in England — playing on everything from TV jingles to the “Goldfinger” soundtrack to Kinks records — during which he learned to read music under pressure and so he appreciated the discipline of the Berklee students. His honorary defgree puts him in a rarefied group of previously awarded artists that include idols like B.B. King and George Martin.
Page closed by wishing the class of 2014 the best of luck.
The other honorees also shared a few words, with Memory remarking of the Friday concert, “You all know how to party!” And an ecstatic Simpson urging the graduates to treat every rehearsal like a performance and jubilantly shouting, “I am so proud of you, your future is so bright. Carry on, y’all!”
It’s a cheery, neighborly, borderline bumpkiny way to signal interpersonal affirmation, so naturally it’s been co-opted by racist trolls.Continue reading »
This exhilarating touring production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s blockbuster serves notice that “Hamilton’’ is built to last.Continue reading »
“Fahrenheit 11/9” is Michael Moore’s latest polemical documentary, and it’s pretty awful.Continue reading »
Former rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight pleaded no contest Thursday to voluntary manslaughter for running over and killing a Compton businessman.Continue reading »
The movie makes an empathetic case for Borden as an intelligent, passionate woman so stifled by her father that she lashed out (and then some).Continue reading »
Look for “The Biggest Little Farm,” “Free Solo,” and “Maiden.”Continue reading »
This week’s picks by Globe critics.Continue reading »
According to star Kristen Bell, who posted the news first on social media, Hulu has ordered eight new episodes of the series, which left the air in 2007.Continue reading »
Amy Scott’s documentary about Ashby, “Hal,” serves as a welcome reminder for filmgoers of a certain age — and revelation for younger ones.Continue reading »