The winner of the award, which appears to be geared toward classical, rather than popular, music and is open to musicians from all countries, will be announced on November 22, St. Cecilia's Day. St. Cecilia is the patron saint of music.
The prize will be awarded to a musician who has had, according to the Queen's announcement, a "major influence on the musical life of the nation."
Peter Maxwell Davies, who holds the title of master of the Queen's music and who is partly responsible for the idea of the medal, will chair the award committee, which includes composer Michael Berkeley, form BBC Proms director Nicholas Kenyon, and former Wigmore Hall director William Lyne.
Kenyon noted that the music medal, like the Queen's award for poetry, will bring public notice to the art form. "Now the Queen and the royal household want to more active in their promotion of musical life," he said, "and it's a jolly good thing."
Evidently not everyone respects the Queen's taste in music. She is quoted, in the Guardian as telling Davies, "We are not philistines. Philip and I are interested in music and we've had this terrible press."