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During the first years of the nineteenth century piano technology progressed at an astonishing rate. The range of notes was extended by two and a half octaves, the sustaining pedal and soundboard were developed, and in England the idea of using metal bracing to bear the tension of the strings was explored, enabling thicker strings and a fuller ...

Source: Classical Music Encyclopedia, founding editor Stanley Sadie
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The piano has occupied a special place in music and, since the advent of amplification, musicians have sought ways in which its expressive, versatile sound could be made louder in order to carry above the sound of other amplified instruments and also how it could be packaged into an instrument more easily transportable than the traditional acoustic piano. ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
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The twentieth century saw the piano return to the orchestra: notable works including the orchestral piano are Kodály’s Háry János (1926), Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony and Orff’s Carmina Burana (1937). Modern composers realized that, as it creates sound with hammers that strike strings, the piano is technically a member of the percussion family. Indeed, in Grainger’s The Warriors (1916) ...

Source: Classical Music Encyclopedia, founding editor Stanley Sadie
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1905, and probably for several decades before that, there were more pianos in the United States than there were bathtubs. In Europe, throughout the nineteenth century, piano sales increased at a greater rate than the population. English, French and German makers dispatched veritable armies of pianos to every corner of the Earth. It was the instrument ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
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The name ‘player piano’ is a misnomer, indeed the precise opposite of the truth. In fact, this is a playerless piano – a piano that plays itself. Origins of the Player Piano Though almost exclusively associated with the early-twentieth century, the idea of a self-playing piano had been around for centuries. Henry VIII’s self-playing virginals and Clementi’s studded-cylinder ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
528 Words Read More

The player piano (usually known by one of its manufacturers’ trade names as the ‘pianola’) was a mechanical device for causing the piano to play a fixed composition in a fixed way. The music has been cut into a roll of paper and when this is fed through a mechanism built into the specially designed piano, a bellows system causes ...

Source: Classical Music Encyclopedia, founding editor Stanley Sadie
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as a soloist in the Atlanta area before signing with RCA in 1950. His first record, ‘Rockin’ With Red’/‘Red’s Boogie’ was a two-sided hit. His early records emphasized his piano, but later sessions were in more of an R&B groove, with horns and vocal groups. He continued to tour mostly in Europe, under the name Dr. Feelgood ...

Source: The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia of Jazz & Blues, founding editor Howard Mandel
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(Piano, vocals, b. 1934) Huey P. Smith was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and worked with Earl King and Guitar Slim in the early 1950s. He made his recording debut for Savoy in 1953 but his on-off tenure with Ace Records from 1955–64 was his most important. His group the Clowns had two huge R&B records in ‘Rockin’ ...

Source: The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia of Jazz & Blues, founding editor Howard Mandel
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rather than keys proper, which produce both single notes and certain pre-ordained chords. The right hand operates the treble keyboard, often though not always modelled on the conventional piano keyboard, giving rise to the term ‘piano accordion’. The instrument is suspended by shoulder straps, providing the hands and fingers with maximum room for manoeuvre. History and Development ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
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Façade (1926) requires wood blocks: stemming from Africa, these are a series of resonant wooden blocks stuck by drumsticks. Wood blocks are also to be found in Gershwin’s two piano concertos, while Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G demands the slapstick, an instrument also known as a ‘whip’, in which two hinged, flat-sided pieces of wood are brought ...

Source: Classical Music Encyclopedia, founding editor Stanley Sadie
196 Words Read More

There are many different instrumental interfaces through which it is possible to control synthesized or sampled sounds – the most common being the piano-style keyboard. The electronic musician is also able to access a wide range of sounds through electric guitar, string, percussion and wind instruments. These devices are, to a large extent, quite recognizably conventional, ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
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first detailed description of a barrel organ appeared in an Arab treatise. Mechanics of the Barrel Organ The mechanical principle underlying all such instruments, from the automated organ and piano to the spectacular mechanical orchestras of the nineteenth century, for which Beethoven composed his notorious Battle Symphony. At its heart is a revolving cylinder or barrel, placed horizontally ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
508 Words Read More

manufactured harmoniums and portative organs. It was created at a time when interest in new keyboard instruments was high. Mustel’s father, Victor, invented the typophone (1865), a tuning-fork piano that used a piano hammer action to play graduated steel tuning forks or prongs instead of bars. Auguste took the keyboard-operated glockenspiel of the eighteenth century (used for Papageno’s bells ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
255 Words Read More

the history of music itself. New musical styles often come about because new instruments become available, or improvements to existing ones are made. Improvements to the design of the piano in the 1770s, for instance, led to its adoption by composers such as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–91), who quickly developed a new, individual style of keyboard writing. ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
5434 Words Read More

(common) to seven (a late-eighteenth-century development, spurred by the development of the piano). Since the pitch is determined not by the length of the strings, as in the piano, but by the distance between the tangent and the bridge, it was frequent practice to assign two, or even three, notes to any given pair of ...

Source: The Illustrated Complete Musical Instruments Handbook, general editor Lucien Jenkins
563 Words Read More
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