Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Michael Curb (born December 24, 1944 in Savannah, Georgia) is an American musician, record company executive, NASCAR owner and politician who served as Lieutenant Governor of California from 1979 until 1983. He is a member of the Republican Party.
A "boy wonder" in business, at age 23 he owned his own record company, sold it out for a large amount of money, and was then appointed head of MGM Records. At MGM in the 1970s, he was associated with Roy Orbison and others such as the Osmond Family. He organised his own group, "The Mike Curb Congregation", which along with the Osmonds was accused by critics of presenting a "white bread" sound but which sold millions of records.
Part of the religious right, Curb was encouraged to enter politics in part by Ronald Reagan. Curb was elected lieutenant governor in November, 1978, at the same time as the reelection of governor Jerry Brown. Brown was out of state for much of 1979 and early 1980 seeking the Democratic nomination for President of the United States. Curb often took advantage of this to fill the role of "acting governor", sometimes vetoing legislation or issuing executive orders that would not be in any way the intent of Brown. Much of this resulted in litigation, but the ability of Curb to act when Brown was out of state was upheld in most instances, setting an important precedent for future lieutenant governors.
Despite being seen briefly as one of the Republican Party's rising stars and being promised a bright political future by some national Republican leaders, Curb became disenchanted with elective politics and did not seek re-election. Returning to the music industry, he established Curb Records. He moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 1994 where his company records for artists such as Wynonna Judd, LeAnn Rimes, Hank Williams, Jr., Tim McGraw, Sawyer Brown and others.
In Nashville, Curb has become known as something of a civic leader and as a benefactor of Belmont University, where his donation toward the construction of a new arena was sufficient to result in it being named the Curb Event Center in his honor. The University also runs "The Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business."
| Preceded by:|
|Lieutenant Governors of California|| Succeeded by:|
Leo T. McCarthy
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