LifeNotes: Dr. Timmy Tappan

Timothy Tappan

Timmy Tappan

A memorial service to celebrate the life of long-time Belmont University College of Entertainment and Music Business faculty member Dr. Timmy Tappan will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday (March 9) at Ocean Way Studio (1200 17th Ave. South). As Tappan’s friends and family discussed the service, they decided that suits and ties would not be appropriate as Tappan rarely wore them. At the request of friends and family, attendees are invited to wear Hawaiian shirts for the service.

In honor of Tappan’s life and commitment to students, a memorial fund has been set up in his name. Memorial gifts can be made to:
Office of Development, Fidelity Hall 105
Belmont University
1900 Belmont Blvd.
Nashville, TN 37212
Or online at

Tappan passed on Sunday from the effects of a heart attack. He began teaching in the Music Business program in the early 1990s as an adjunct instructor and joined the full-time faculty in 1998 as an assistant professor.

Prior to his career at Belmont he had a long and successful musical career where he worked for Bobby Goldsboro as his musical director and producer; wrote songs recorded by Mac Davis, Reba McEntire, Loretta Lynn, Crystal Gayle, Mickey Gilley, Faith Hill, Trisha Yearwood, John Denver, Kathie Lee Gifford, Mike Love and the Beach Boys and Michael Martin Murphy. Tappan was musical director of the TV shows Marty Robbins’ Spotlight, Nashville on the Road and The Bobby Goldsboro Show. He wrote and produced advertising music for KFC, Hawaiian Tropic, Toyota, Coca Cola, Hanes, Minute Maid, the Arbor Day Foundation and Build-a-Bear; and arranged TV music for Kenny Rogers, B.J. Thomas, Dolly Parton, Dave Loggins, Bobbi Gentry, Glen Campbell and Henry Mancini. Tappan earned two Gold Records and a No. 1 country award for his song “Fool’s Gold” recorded by artist Lee Greenwood.

Tappan earned his B.S. in Education from Ball State University, his M.Ed. from Belmont University and his Ed.D. at Trevecca Nazarene University.

He is survived by wife Tama; brother Tom Tappan; step-son Ned Robertson; and step-daughter Kristen House and grandchildren, Holden, Shephard, and Harper House; and daughters Kerri Tappan Egbert; Kim Tappan McClain; Kristan Tappan Mashburn; and grandchildren Kristen Brewer, Samantha Novachek, Shelby and Alli Mashburn; Caroline, Mary Kate and Jake McClain; John Gray and Nicholas Egbert; and two great-grand children Emma and Aerie Belt.


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Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at [email protected]

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