Doctor of Bluegrass
Legendary bluegrass singer and guitar master Arthel “Doc” Watson received an honorary doctor of music degree from Berklee on Saturday, May 1. The award was presented at MerleFest, the music festival in Wilkesboro, NC, named for Watson’s late son Merle Watson
Matt Glaser, the artistic director of Berklee’s American Roots Music Program; Berklee trustee Rusty Williams; and MP&E Professor Stephen Webber presented the award. During the ceremony, Glaser (on fiddle) and Webber (on ukelele) broke into the tune “When the Roses Bloom in Dixieland,” the first song Watson ever learned, and the honoree joined in on guitar, and sang several verses. He also shared his thoughts on receiving the degree and explained how he got his nickname.