- Bachelor of Science, Communications (Journalism Electronic Media), University of Tennessee, 2006
JEFF COHRAN is a South Memphis-born artist, writer, educator, DJ, and producer of music and live events.
From 2009 - 2022, Cohran served as the Tour and Production Manager for Oscar-winning, Grammy-nominated Atlantic Records artist Janelle Monáe and her Wondaland Records label. During his time with Ms. Monáe and Wondaland, Cohran produced eight world tours, featuring shows at The White House, The Nobel Peace Prize Concert, The Oscars, The Grammy Awards, The Sydney Opera House, Saturday Night Live, Coachella Festival, Glastonbury Festival; Montreux Jazz Festival; The BET Awards, Essence Festival; among others.
Following the production of Ms. Monáe’s 2018 - 2019 Dirty Computer World Tour, Cohran was encouraged by his mentor and business partner Monica Young (Oscar Award-winning producer of Hair Love) to explore scriptwriting and ﬁlm production. Under Young’s guidance, Cohran is developing a pilot for a sitcom, as well as a feature ﬁlm script.
2020 - 2021 was a year of rapid growth and creation. Cohran and lifelong creative partners TANGELA (Berklee College of Music / Stax Academy) and Amanda Davis (Janelle Monáe; Ella Mai; Jon Batiste; Nipsey Hustle, etc.) shifted operations to their native Memphis and banded together to produce TANGELA’s genre-bending SPLENDID MIND EP (Summer 2021). Inspired by the creative collaboration with DMC, Cohran carefully crafted his debut project, FUNKYTOWN VOL 1, while composing music for sync and music placement opportunities. His music has been included in campaigns by rising London director Tajana Bunton-Williams, garnering the attention of music supervisors, executives, and artists.
In 2021, Cohran was hired as an Assistant Professor of Teaching Music Business at the University of Memphis’ Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music. Cohran has taught courses in Record Operations, Music Marketing and Management, Music Business Entrepreneurship, Concerts and Touring, and Songwriting. He runs the program’s internship program and serves on several faculty committees. In his short time there, the Music Business program has introduced its ﬁrst artist-in-residence (Talibah Saﬁya), relaunched the dormant High Water record label, and bolstered relationships with leading entertainment industry companies.
Also, in 2021, Cohran premiered a weekly radio show, FUNKYTOWN, on WYXR 91.7 FM Memphis under the DJ moniker STH MEMPHIS JEFF. STH MEMPHIS JEFF is slated to present the Funkytown Dance party and perform nationally on his Funkytown USA Tour.
In addition to his creative and professorial exploits, Cohran has remained active in the live touring industry. Cohran was the Production Manager for Grammy award winner Maverick City at the 2022 BET Awards. Later that year, Cohran was hired as Production Manager for the Atlanta-bred Dreamville Records duo EARTHGANG. Cohran produced their opening slot for The Gorillaz World Tour 2022 and their 2023 Coachella performances. Cohran served as Road Manager for superstar Bruno Mars on his 2023 Asia tour (Seoul and Manila).
Since 2007, Cohran has been a partner and the creative director for Muddy Water, an Atlanta-based entertainment company specializing in creative consulting: management, A&R, marketing, and production of live events. With Muddy Water, Jeff has managed visual artist Fabian Williams, producer DJ Xavier BLK, music collective WERC Crew, and jazz sextet Jaspects. Cohran A&R’d the group’s cult-classic Double Consciousness (2007) and The Polkadotted Stripe (2009) albums.
A passion for turning ideas into reality inspired Cohran to co-create All Cows Eat Grass (ACEG). From 2011 until 2017, Cohran was ACEG’s Creative Director, percussionist, producer and vocalist. Cohran A&R’d the group’s three EPs, The Kool Collection remix project, and their ﬁrst album, Self-Help.
A 2006 graduate of The University of Tennessee-Knoxville (Journalism Electronic Media; minor in Political Science), Jeff’s other passions are sports, journalism, and activism. In his four years at UT, Cohran was a staff writer and political columnist for the university’s Daily Beacon newspaper. Jeff cites his experiences as a political columnist and a sports writer covering the Volunteers’ football, basketball, and track beats as transformative in his creative development. A former track standout at Memphis Central High, Cohran was the student manager of the 2005 University of Tennessee Lady Vols National Championship track and ﬁeld team.
A career activist, Jeff served as Vice President of the Memphis NAACP Youth Council, Vice President of the NAACP Tennessee Youth and College Division, and President of the UTK NAACP college chapter. In 2006, he was awarded the University of Tennessee-Knoxville’s Gene Mitchell Gray Award for promoting diversity on campus. He founded The UT Black Issues Conference, which celebrated its 15th anniversary in 2020. In 2018, Jeff presented The Dream Forum, which aimed to connect high schoolers to creative arts, media, and philanthropy careers.