Herbie Hancock ’60

Herbie Hancock (1940-) is a multitalented pianist, composer, bandleader, and recording artist, and one of the most significant figures in jazz. Hancock double-majored in music and electrical engineering at Grinnell College. After graduating in 1960, he moved to Chicago to study and play jazz. He played with Miles Davis and a number of other musicians while also producing his own work. Known for his innovative techniques, he mixed genres and sound to make critically acclaimed music that incorporates jazz, funk, and electronica. Hancock’s 1983 single “Rockit” helped to popularize the scratching and turntable techniques featured in early hip hop. During his prolific career, Hancock produced many albums and he won the Grammy for Album of the Year in 2008 for River: The Joni Letters. He was awarded a Kennedy Center Honor in 2013.

To return to the cover image on the home page, click here.