Mike Curb Institute

Passing on the Tradition: Joyce Cobb’s Influence on the Memphis Community as an Educator

Alexandra Howard ‘18 worked this spring semester with Dr. Bass on an independent study on the life and legacy of Memphis jazz legend Joyce Cobb. Her final product was the April Block Party honoring Joyce Cobb and a final paper. Below is a condensed version of her final paper.

Passing on the Tradition: Joyce Cobb’s Influence on the Memphis Community as an Educator

The Senior Curb Fellows Look Back

As the four Curb Institute seniors—Alice Fugate, Sarah Johnson, Cam Maxwell, and Patrick Smith—look forward to their graduation in May, we asked them to look back as well, and reflect on how they got involved with the Institute and what their time with the Curb Institute has meant to them. The paths of each of the fellows have been varied; they started their time with the Curb Institute at different stages in their college careers and contributed different skills and interests to our work. Despite these differences, however, common themes unite their narratives.

Harold Mabern Quartet Concert: April 6, 2018

Harold Mabern, Eric Alexander, John Webber, and Joe Farnsworth performed in McNeill Concert Hall at Rhodes College on Friday, April 6, 2018. A Memphis native, Mabern is a graduate of Manassas High School where he was classmates with George Coleman, Charles Lloyd, and Booker Little. He is a true living jazz legend, a keeper of the flame of Memphis jazz, and Memphis is proud to claim him.

Curb Block Party and Concert Honoring Joyce Cobb

On April 20th, 2018, legendary jazz and R&B singer Joyce Cobb performed at the Mike Curb Institute Block Party. The party took place on a beautiful afternoon on campus in Fischer Gardens and was the final project of a Directed Inquiry class with the Curb Institute. Alexandra Howard ‘18 took the independent study class with Dr. Bass. Its purpose was to learn more about the impact Joyce Cobb, Howard’s voice teacher, has made on the music education scene in Memphis.

Jazz Legend Harold Mabern to Perform at Rhodes College on April 6, 2018

Jazz musician Harold Mabern was born in 1936 in Memphis, Tennessee. Surprisingly, his music career initially began on drums. It was not until he reached the age of fifteen that Mabern began teaching himself piano through watching great jazz pianists like Charles Thomas and Phineas Newborn Jr. During his attendance at Manassas High School, Mabern performed locally with fellow Manassas students and budding musicians George Coleman, Charles Lloyd, and Booker Little.

Preservation-Through-Innovation: This Spring’s Creative Output from the Curb Institute

The Curb Institute at Rhodes is dedicated to the preservation of the rich musical history of Memphis. This April, the Institute has the privilege of honoring two foundations of this tradition, jazz pianist Harold Mabern and singer Joyce Cobb. Both artists will perform concerts on Rhodes’ campus, offering students the opportunity to experience a lesser-known element of the Memphis music narrative, jazz, as well as a chance to listen to two legendary musicians.

Aquarian Blood Concert at Goner Records

On Thursday, March 15, 2018 Memphis’s own Aquarian Blood played an intimate show at Goner Records in the Cooper-Young neighborhood. A mix of lo-fi sounds with a heavy garage-punk influence, Aquarian Blood’s implementation of frenzied vocals with laid-back performance style made for an interesting contrast. Founded by JB Horrell and former Nots drummer Laurel Ferdon, Aquarian Blood’s sound harkens back to the Memphis punk scene of the early 2000’s which Goner is known for cultivating.

Curb Fellow Senior Recitals, Spring 2018

Patrick Smith (Music and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Double Major) held his senior clarinet recital on March 19, 2018 at 7:30 pm in Tuthill Performance Hall in Hassell Hall. His recital focused on nineteenth and twentieth century compositions either written for a specific clarinetist, written for clarinets in general, or arranged for clarinet later in the life of the composition. He played pieces such as the first and second movements of Leonard Bernstein’s Sonata for Clarinet and Piano, Serge Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise Op. 34, No.

Rhodes College Rites of Spring Concert, March 23-24, 2018

This years Rites of Spring was definitely one to remember. The lineup this year originally consisted of Rhodes student band 50/50 and Timeflies on Friday and Curb Fellow Dré Moore and A$AP Ferg on Saturday. Friday’s lineup was solid, with 50/50 totally killing their set and garnering a ton of new fans. Timeflies was a more nostalgic band for most of the audience, and they covered a lot of earlier pop hits as well as playing their own music.

Sofar Sounds Concert: Magnolia, PreauXX, and Sawyer

Rafe Offer and Rocky Start saw the loss of the magic of live music in traditional gigs because of the loud and crowded atmosphere of most concert venues. In 2009, they invited some friends over to their London flat for a low-key, intimate gig. Eight people gathered on their living room floor to listen to live music performed by their friend Dave Alexander and share drinks. The room was so quiet from people attentively listening to the music you could hear the clock ticking in the background.