James E. Bobb joined the staff of First Congregational Church in Columbus Ohio as Minister of Music in July of 2009. A native of Chillicothe, Ohio, Bobb returned to his home state after 21 years in Rochester, New York. While in Rochester he was Director of Music for the Lutheran Church of the Incarnate Word where he conducted the St. John Passion and other works by Bach, Buxtehude, Schütz, Gabrieli, Purcell, and Telemann, and led the choir on a tour of Sweden. Also in Rochester, he appeared frequently on the Pegasus Early Music series, was director of the Rochester Bach Festival, an instructor in Sacred Music at the Eastman School of Music, Adjunct Professor of organ at Nazareth College, and a chapter dean of the American Guild of Organists.
Bobb holds performer’s certificates and graduate degrees and in organ and harpsichord performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music where his teachers included Russell Saunders and David Craighead in organ and Arthur Haas in harpsichord. His undergraduate work was at Capital University where his teachers were Janet Linker in organ and Frank Hussey in piano.
At the harpsichord, Bobb has performed Bach’s Goldberg Variations in Manhattan, Boston, Rochester, and Baltimore. He has appeared as organ and harpsichord soloist, conductor, and continuo player with The Publick Musick and the Rochester Bach Festival. With The Publick Musick, he had appeared in New York, Indiana, Maine, and Germany, and has recorded music of Telemann and Vivaldi. Bobb has also enjoyed leading hymn festivals in Ohio, New York, Georgia, and Oklahoma.