Even though he quit Cal State Northridge in 1963 after his freshman year, former California Lt. Gov. Mike Curb has warm memories of the school, the place where he started earning his fortune in the music industry.
Curb, 61, now chairman of Curb Records in Nashville, showed his gratitude Wednesday, pledging $10 million to the university. Half of the money is intended for the university's planned $100-million regional performing arts center.
The rest of the donation will go to the College of Arts, Media and Communication, with $1 million set aside to endow a faculty chair specializing in music industry studies.
His mentors at Cal State Northridge, Curb recalled in a telephone interview, "allowed me to use their facilities to record. And I wrote my first songs there." That included his breakthrough "You Meet the Nicest People on a Honda," which became the automaker's marketing theme.