Joan Armatrading

To be awarded a Doctor of Music DMus

Tuesday 29 November - afternoon ceremony

"I write," says Joan Armatrading, "because I love it.”

The very first British female singer/songwriter, producer and musician to gain international success, Joan has won accolade after accolade. Having been honoured by an MBE from the Queen in 2001.  In 2020, Joan was awarded a CBE and she has even received the keys to Sydney along the way.

In 1973 she was named Outstanding New Artist in Music Week - and she’s never looked back.

With 21 superlative albums to her credit Joan's subtle and sublime music has touched millions of people all over the world. 

Three times Grammy nominated, two times Brit nominated, winner of a coveted Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection, and winner of the BASCA Gold Badge Award in 2012, it is a recognition that continues to this day. 2012 saw Joan receive the British Folk Festival Award, 2016 Radio 2’s Folk Award for Lifetime Achievement and, MPG Outstanding Contribution Award to UK music (2022). The standout achievements are many.

In 2007 Joan became the first female British artist to debut at number 1 in the Billboard Blues chart and also the first ever female UK artist to be nominated for a Grammy in the blues category.

In 2014/2015 Joan undertook her last massive world tour - it covered an incredible 235 dates with most selling out as soon as they went on sale. Joan made it clear, however, she was not leaving the road for good – “I’ll never retire” – just withdrawing from year-long excursions.

In 2016 she composed the music to the acclaimed Donmar Warehouse production of The Tempest which played both in London and New York.

Joan Armatrading has come a long way since her birth in the West Indies and her upbringing in Birmingham.

Profile image of Joan Armatrading