Sonny Burgess, the 79-year old rock and roll pioneer and rockabilly icon will join ASU’s graduating class to receive an Honorary Doctorate of Music on this Saturday, May 7.

Of the honor, Dr. G. Daniel Howard, interim chancellor, says “”Sonny Burgess was nominated for the Honorary Doctor of Music degree by the ASU faculty in recognition of his contributions to the rich musical heritage of northeast Arkansas and America. It is very special for ASU to have the opportunity to recognize this extraordinary and talented musician who has been a true inspiration to many.”


Burgess is on a very short list of rock originators who remain active on stages to this day. The Arkansas Wild Man can still be seen with his Legendary Pacers and, furthermore, heard weekly on KASU, the university’s radio station, on his long-lived radio show, “We Wanna Boogie.”