Robert Blount – Musician/Teacher

Robert Blount, Jr. B.A. Class of 1985. Catholic University. Musician/Teacher.

Most people assume that anyone who is a musician probably grew up in a household that emphasized music. It’s ironic then that the loving parents who raised Rob weren’t very interested in his record collection or his jazz heroes.

As a result, Rob was self-taught until 1976 when his formal training began at Duke Ellington School of the Arts, a unique public high school in Washington, D.C. that combines both academic and artistic instruction.

For the next three years, Rob immersed himself in the study and performance of music. He found two very different ways to express himself musically: the piano and the bassoon. He seemed to have that indescribable something extra that made an immediate impact on audiences.

He also took a full load of college preparatory academic courses at Ellington. For the Blount family, this raised the question of how to pay for his next level of education. When they heard about federal student loans, it was indeed music to their ears.

Student loans would finance Rob’s tuition and cover all of his educational expenses from his freshman year through to graduation.

With his student loan, Rob first earned his bassoon performance certificate from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland. He went on to earn a B.A. from Catholic University of America in 1985, double majoring in bassoon and piano.

During his college years, Rob played in Rome for the Pope; he performed at the Tanglewood Music Center in Massachusetts; and he was a guest artist at Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan.

Today, Rob is highly regarded for his artistry. Among his many gigs as a piano man and bassoonist, you may have heard him at the John F. Kennedy Center playing piano at the Roof Terrace. Since Rob believes music is a gift meant to be shared, it’s not surprising that he also spends time educating and encouraging children to pursue music.