COPENHAGEN, Denmark (CelebrityAccess) DJ Grandmaster Flash, German violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and music charity Playing for Change Foundation have been announced as winners of Sweden’s Polar Music Prize for 2019.
Grandmaster Flash, 61, real name Joseph Saddler, is the first person from the world of rap and hip-hop to receive the prize. The award panel said he is “rightly heralded as a hip-hop virtuoso” and “one of the first to manipulate music by placing his fingers on the vinyl.”
Grandmaster Flash said it was an honor to receive the prize.
“In our culture, what we do as DJs gets overlooked,” he said, according to the Associated Press.
Mutter was cited as being “a musical phenomenon,” playing with “virtuosity and astonishing clarity.” Playing For Change Foundation, which runs music programs in developing countries, brings “peace to the world through music.”
The award, founded in 1989 by the late Stig Anderson, manager of ABBA, has been handed out every year since 1992 and is often called the Nobel Prize of music. It is Sweden’s biggest music award.
Previous winners include Sting, Paul McCartney, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and Metallica, and conductors Pierre Boulez and Mstislav Rostropovich.