Berklee to honor Lionel Richie, Lucinda Williams, and Todd Rundgren at commencement

Todd Rundgren
Todd Rundgren

Berklee College of Music has put together an all-star band for its commencement ceremony.

Berklee president Roger Brown announced Monday that Lionel Richie, Lucinda Williams, and Todd Rundgren will receive honorary doctor of music degrees at Berklee’s graduation ceremony May 13, and Rundgren will deliver the address. Also receiving honorary degrees will be Recording Academy president Neil Portnow and South Korean producer and musician Shin Joong Hyun.

Richie was a member of the Commodores, writing such hits as “Easy,” “Three Times a Lady,” and, of course, “Brick House.” As a solo artist he had 13 consecutive top 10 singles between 1981-1987, including “Truly,” “All Night Long (All Night),” “Say You, Say Me,” and “Hello.”


Williams, who is, inarguably, one of America’s great songwriters, is perhaps best known for her 1998 LP “Car Wheels on a Gravel Road.”

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And what to say about Rundgren, whose canon includes such classic rock staples as “Hello It’s Me” and “Can We Still Be Friends.” Todd, whose name, diehard fans are quick to point out, is synonymous with God, also has produced albums by everyone from New York Dolls to the Patti Smith Group to Meatloaf to XTC.

Berklee’s commencement takes place at Agganis Arena at Boston University. The night before, students will pay tribute to the honorees by performing music associated with their careers. Alas, the concert is not open to the public.