The Crosby, Stills and Nash star received the prize at the music equipment trade body's annual NAMM event at the city's Anaheim Arena.

"What an incredible honor," he told the Orange County Register after collecting the trophy from NAMM president Joe Lammond. "You certainly don't get into rock 'n' roll or music to get awards, but it's nice to be recognised and to have validation that what you're doing seems to be the right path."

Previous recipients of the Music for Life award include Stevie Wonder, Yoko Ono and Smokey Robinson.