Marcus D. Rabb

Chair of the Department of Music
Marcus Rabb

My music is evidence of my soul's will to live. ― Charles Mingus


B.M. Howard University

M.Mus. Howard University


Marcus is native of Baltimore, MD. He grew up singing and playing music in the Baptist church of his extended family as child and fell in love with the sound of the trumpet somewhere between hearing Louis Armstrong and Wynton Marsalis records. Marcus credits his parents for exposing him to a wide variety of live and recorded music as a child which enabled him to be comfortable later in various types of musical settings as a performer. He also was fortunate to have excellent music teachers that taught him about the emotional power of music.

Marcus earned a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music Degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C. He studied trumpet with Fred Irby III, and jazz composition and arranging with the late Reppard Stone. It was there that he developed an appreciation for other genres including European Classical music, Caribbean and Latin music, Eastern music, and of course, American Jazz. “My years at Howard afforded me many opportunities to share the stage with some incredible musicians. It also taught me how to prepare for a professional career in music.”

Marcus has been a music educator for over two decades. “I have always believed in helping my students learn how to listen to music. It seems simple but there are so many things that can prevent us from truly appreciating the beauty and value of music from other cultures and perspectives. My goal at Exeter is to invite collaboration and get students to make connections with each other through music.”

At Exeter, Marcus directs the Jazz Ensemble, Concert Band, several Contemporary Music Ensembles and the Global Rhythm Ensemble.  He is also a co-advisor to the Exeter Association of Rock. These are the primary vehicles through which he intends to have a positive and lasting impact.

Marcus enjoys family time, cooking, reading biographies, and songwriting.

“I am blessed to have an amazing wife, Elaine, and wonderfully creative daughter, Mingus, to share this journey with me.”