This week, RSL presented an Honorary Fellowship to multiple Grammy award winning pioneers: Billy Cobham and Randy Brecker, to a packed-house at the legendary Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club.

A fellowship of RSL is currently the highest honour that RSL can bestow. Fellowships are presented to acknowledge practitioners who have contributed to the development of their art form and inspired the students of RSL qualifications to achieve their best, whilst promoting good practice within the music education sector itself.


Billy Cobham

Before being awarded his Honorary Fellowship, Billy Cobham worked closely as an advisor for RSL, with the mutual aim to inspire music lovers looking to develop their musical talent through education. The collaboration came at a perfect time. With RSL’s brand new GDB syllabus (Guitar, Bass & Drums) in development, Billy helped to influence a brand-new wave of musicians all over again by allowing us to record his groundbreaking composition “Red Baron” for our Grade Drum 8 release. Billy even joined the Rockschool Band during their recording sessions at Real World Studios (Bath) for the track.

Billy Cobham receiving his award from RSL's John Simpson (CEO) and Norton York (Founder)


Randy Brecker

The event also saw us recongnise the irrepressible, Randy Brecker. The world renowned Brecker Brothers’ (formed with his brother Michael) eponymous first record, which Randy wrote, arranged and produced, featured his now classic composition “Some Skunk Funk”, which also appears on the Rockschool Drums Grade 8 material, released in September 2018. Randy’s innumerable accomplishments continued well into present-day and as a composer, performer and in-demand clinician, Brecker continues to influence and inspire young musicians around the world.

John and Norton at the legendary Ronnie Scott's with Randy Brecker


“To be able to welcome not one, but two incredibly influential musical figures into the RSL family is very exciting. To do so in front of a packed house at the legendary Ronnie Scott’s - incredible! Huge thanks to both Billy and Randy for making it an evening to remember, and for continuing to inspire the next generation of musicians around the world.”

John Simpson, CEO (RSL Awards)

You can find "Some Skunk Funk" by the Brecker Brothers and "Red Baron" by Billy Cobham in our latest Grade 8 Drums material (click on the book for info!)

Thanks to Billy, Randy and all the people at Ronnie Scott's - what a night!

The RSL Team