Dr. Joseph C. Logan
Joseph Clayton Logan was born into a musical family in Athens, Georgia, in 1928. His mother and father were both singers and his mother began teaching Joseph piano at age five. At age nine, he began formal lessons with Myrtle Harrell and at fifteen began voice lessons with Byron Warner, Head of the Vocal Department at The University of Georgia. While still a student at University High School he was invited to join The University of Georgia Men’s Glee Club, an association which extended through his Master’s degree and his being President of that group his senior year at the University.
At the University he sang many leads in light operas, cantatas, oratorios, and special music presentations. For six years he was a paid soloist in the local Jewish synagogue, at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, and in his own protestant church as well as often singing for special services at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Atlanta. He left the University of Georgia having earned BFA and MFA Degrees in Vocal Performance, studying under Byron Warner and Vladimir Zorin.
Following one year as a high school choral director, he was appointed Associate Professor of Music and Director of Vocal-Choral activities at Valdosta State College (now University) in Valdosta, Georgia. There he was a regular oratorio soloist throughout Georgia and northern Florida. His choral ensembles were well known, performing before National Conferences of Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs in Dallas, Texas and Washington D. C. and often in Atlanta, Jacksonville, and many other venues. During twelve years at Valdosta State, he served as Music Department Chair the last five.
Going next to Florida State University, he was named Executive Assistant to Dr. Karl Kuersteiner, Dean of the School of Music, and an Instructor of Vocal Performance while earning his PhD Degree. At FSU he learned from and was especially influenced by personal association with Karl Kuersteiner, Carlisle Floyd, Charlotte Reinke, Elena Nikolaidi, Richard Burgin, Wiley Housewright, and Irvin Cooper.
From Florida State he went to Appalachian State Teachers College (now University) as Coordinator of Vocal/Choral Music. In 1967 he formed the University Singers who soon performed with the North Carolina State Symphony Orchestra and, by audition, at the National Convention of the Music Educators’ National Conference in Chicago.
Along with Professors MacWilliam Disbrow, Philip Paul, Charles Isley, and Department Chairman William Spencer, he helped plan and initiate the Summer Music Camp (now Cannon Music Camp) for high school students. This new camp, very successfully led by the dedicated and knowledgeable direction of Dr. Charles Isley, continues to be an extremely important component of the School of Music.
In 1970, Dr. Logan was invited by Chancellor Herbert Wey to become Assistant to the Chancellor and to direct the federally funded TTT Program, essentially a post-doctoral program for University professors. During this three-year program, faculty participants from several disciplines sought innovative ways to improve instruction and otherwise benefit their departments and the entire University. Among others, Watauga College was planned and initiated by TTT participants and the University Overseas Study Program was begun. This occurred when the Chancellor asked Dr. Logan to plan and direct a summer overseas experience or students and faculty. In 1972 he led 76 students and faculty to Rome, Venice, Vienna, and Paris for 39 days, 28 of which were spent in course work in Vienna. Upon return, Dr. Logan asked the Chancellor to form a University Foreign Study Council, which was instituted with Dean William Strickland as chairman. Based on this beginning, overseas studies have grown extensively through the years at Appalachian.
While in the Chancellor’s Office, Dr. Logan was able to plan and finance the establishment of a chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda, national music honor society at Appalachian and to assist with financing the Music Department’s annual Contemporary Music Festival.
Dr. Logan was next named Dean of Appalachian’s College of Education where his objectives of initiating a major in Middle School Education, broadening prospective teacher experiences in public schools by extending field-based opportunities, hiring qualified young professors with doctorates and raising College faculty salaries, were achieved. He served as President of the North Carolina Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
Returning to the School of Music, Dr. Logan served as Coordinator of Graduate Studies in music and taught courses in choral literature and techniques, history of music, and philosophy of music.
Always interested in music history, through the years Dr. Logan made more than 30 trips to music sites in Europe as well as other visits to Africa, Greece, Turkey, China, Japan, Thailand, and Russia. He took several groups of music majors to Italy, Germany, and Austria. During summers he studied with notable teachers including Berton Coffin and Michael Head at the University of Colorado and Ferdinand Grossman and Guenther Theuring at the Akademie Für Musik in Vienna, Austria. He is a member of several honor societies and his publications have appeared in The Music Journal, The MENC Journal, and Journal of Research in Music Education.
Since his retirement in 1991 he and his wife, Pat (retired Risk Management and Insurance Coordinator at Appalachian) continue to be active, spending the summer months in Boone and the winters in Kissimmee, Fla.