Belfast Telegraph

Lynne and Mvula get special degrees

Jeff Lynne and Laura Mvula have been presented with honorary degrees at Birmingham City University.

Rocker Jeff, the driving force of iconic rock band ELO and now a major mover and shaker in America, received an honorary doctorate from the university.

The 66-year-old music legend, who was also one fifth of rock super group the Traveling Wilburys, insisted recognition in his own city means as much as the many awards and accolades he's received around the world.

He said: "This is really meaningful and I'm thrilled to bits to get this award. It's beyond anything I ever thought of getting so I'm really chuffed about it."

The musician revealed he is currently collaborating with Canadian rocker Bryan Adams.

He said: "I'm working on my own music and with Bryan Adams a little bit. But when I get back over there [to the US] we'll be probably doing a lot more Bryan Adams and my own stuff again."

Mobo-winning soul singer Laura was similarly delighted to be named alumni of the year by the university she graduated from in 2008.

Laura, 27, said: "It's priceless to be here. I think when you're recognised in your own home, it's kind of the highest accolade. I want to be championed by the people that raised me."

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