For #Music fans of a certain genre and generation, Norman Cook was better known by the moniker of DJ Fatboy Slim during the 1990s, after a highly successful time with the band The Housemartins in the late 1980s. The top DJ and music producer rolled out a succession of hit records that popularised the 'big beat' sound, such as The Rockafeller Skank, Praise You and Right Here Right Now, that attracted many fans to his music and netted him a tidy fortune to boot. He is to be rewarded this week with the Alumnus Award 2015 from the University of Brighton, in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the music industry and also for his continued support for the university itself over the years.
Cook's ties to the university or rather Brighton Polytechnic, when he was a student there between 1982 and 1985, are long established. He attained a BA in British Studies during his own time there, before moving on to a career in the music industry. He moved to the south-coast resort thirty-three years ago and has kept it as his base ever since, maintaining his connection to the location. His affinity to the city also extends to the local football team, Brighton & Hove Albion, of which he is a large shareholder.
He was clearly delighted to be told the news: "I am proud with a capital 'P' to be receiving this award. I am proud of my city, my education and my career and this award seems to celebrate all three in one happy event."
Norman has previously been awarded a star on the city of Brighton's Walk of Fame, next to that for Winston Churchill, no less. He is married to the television personality Zoe Ball.
The award ceremony is scheduled for this Thursday and Friday at the Brighton Dome, when more than 1,800 University of Brighton students will also graduate and receive their degrees, although Cook is due to receive his award on the first day.
In addition to Cook, a second University of Brighton Alumnus Award 2015 will be presented to Dr Gary Brickley, Senior Lecturer in the university's School of Sport and Service Management. He receives his award for outstanding contributions in the coaching of Paralympic athletes, such as Dame Sarah Storey and Darren Kenny, and for his general expertise in that field. #Celebrities