On January 1st, the Thelonious Monk Institute will change names, following a request put in by the Monk Estate.

The institute, which been operating as a non-profit for the last thirty years, exists to promote jazz through a focus between public policy, music education and jazz appreciation. Herbie Hancock has acted as the board chairman for the last fifteen years and now he will become its namesake, too, after a unanimous vote on the matter.

The iconic bandleader, composer, piano virtuoso, and 14-time Grammy winner will be honored by the change come January 1st, following a “request made by the representatives of the Monk Estate regarding the continued use of Thelonious Monk’s name.”

Hancock’s statement: “Having the Institute named in my honor is tremendously humbling and represents a profound moment for my family and me.” He went on to say that he looks forward to “expanding the organization’s important worldwide jazz education and humanitarian initiatives.”  Whether or not the institute’s associated schemes will also be renamed, for example the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition, remains to be seen.


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