Chuck Berry is to be awarded the 2014 Polar Music Prize, said to be the musical equivalent of a Nobel prize.
“Chuck Berry was the rock’n’roll pioneer who turned the electric guitar into the main instrument of rock music,” the jury said in its citation.
“Every riff and solo played by rock guitarists over the last 60 years contains DNA that can be traced right back to Chuck Berry.”
The 87-year-old Berry is one of two recipients of this year’s Polar Music Prize, following the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin. Peter Sellars, the American opera and theatre director, will also receive the accolate in a ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden on August 26 in the presence of King Carl XVI of Sweden.
The million kronor prize (£82,000) was founded 25 years ago by Stig ‘Stikkan’ Anderson, the publisher, lyricist and manager of Abba.
The first Polar Music Prize laureate was Paul McCartney.