Well, there went the first 3/4 of 2022! I hope all is well with everyone as we slide into Fall, a season of change. Don't blink, though, as the holidays are coming up fast!
Enjoy the new reviews, interview and articles as well as the music trivia this month!
The practice of using plastic for piano keys instead of ivory really took hold in 1973 when Congress banned the importation of ivory.
Until the 1780's, keyboard instruments were used mostly for the purpose of accompanying other instruments or singers.
Bartolomeo Cristofori was the keeper of the instruments in the Florentine Court. It was previously thought that he invented the piano in 1709, but he may have built the first one as early at 1694. He had sold three of them by 1711.
There are lots of new reviews for you to enjoy again this month - everything from classical to Big Band, John Denver covers, a German/Czech duo, and much more! I also reviewed two more of Earl Johnson's songbooks, and you can find links to all of them right here
Elton John won a piano scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music at the age of 11.
A drop of a half step in a piano's pitch (for example, from C# to C), causes a drop in the total tension on the piano of about 5,000 pounds.
Before music publishing became an actual business in the 1750's, people had to copy by hand any music that they wanted to have.
New Interviews and Articles:
Here's a mixed bag for you: an interview with Latin/World composer and guitarist, Russ Hewitt
; an article/review about the world premier of Justin Levitt and David Glass' Bootleg - The Movie
, and collection of videos of this amazing piano duo's improvised piano duets over the past ten years; and a heartfelt tribute to Pharoah Sanders
from Steve Yip! There are links to all of them here
and direct links to each article above.
Jonas Chickering (1796-1853) was the founder of a Boston firm that would become the first major American piano manufacturing success story. Chickering's pianos earned international praise and fame, and they were the first to introduce a design change that made American pianos distinctly different from European instruments - the use of the one-piece cast-iron frame.
The Steinways began their careers in America working for other piano manufacturers and learning American manufacturing techniques. By 1853, they regrouped to form Steinway and Sons and began to make square pianos.
If you hate to practice the piano, you’re a misodoctakleidist. Don’t ask me to pronounce it!
Gratitude: We did something new last year that I think worked really well. The American November celebration of Thanksgiving is always a time to reflect on things we're thankful for, but let's share the wealth and hopefully raise the spirits of people from all over the world! It's been a challenging 2 1/2 years, but I know we all have something we're grateful for. For anyone who would like to participate, just send me an email with two things you are most thankful/grateful for, and I'll share them in the November issue of "Pianotes." You can email them to me at email@example.com by October 30th and I'll include them all. And yes, we'll do the "Two Biggest Holiday Wishes" list again for the December issue!
Dwight H. Baldwin was a music teacher from Cincinnati, Ohio. He was 41 when he decided to leave the teaching profession to start selling the pianos he had so often recommended to his students.
In the US in 1927, there were 248 piano manufacturers producing 423 brands. At that time there were no foreign brands. In 1987, there were 8 piano manufacturers producing 13 brands; there were 36 foreign brands. The two remaining American piano manufacturers are Steinway and Baldwin.
The pianoforte made its concert debut in 1768.
October Birthdays: Here is a partial list of musical birthdays happening in October:
10/3: Lindy Kerby
10/7: Peter Sterling
10/8: Laura Sullivan
10/9: Frank Huang & Darlene Koldenhoven
10/17: Robert Linton
10/19: Lesley Spencer
10/20: David Vito Gregoli
10/24: Doug Hammer & Michael Stribling
10/25: Matt Johnson
10/27: Antonio Simone
10/28: Charles Denler
10/29: Christel Veraart
10/30: Judson Hurd, Lucas Kirby & Marge Adler
Happy Birthday to all of you!
The term "recital" first appeared in print in the announcement for a concert by Franz Liszt on June 9, 1840. It was laughed at in the beginning ("how can one recite on the piano?"), but the term has lasted through the present day. Liszt was also the first musician to give a concert without assistance from other artists.
The grand piano developed into an instrument that answered the acoustical demands of concert settings, the musical needs of professional musicians and serious amateurs, and the social needs of the rich and powerful.
The ruling clergy of the Massachusetts Puritans were strongly opposed to the use of organs in church. Music could be played in private homes, but not in church.
Musical Holidays and Observances: Here is your list of musical holidays for the month!
October is Country Music Month
October 2-8, 2022 is National Carry a Tune Week
1st: International Music Day, World Ballet Day, & CD Player Day
4th: International Toot Your Flute Day
7th: Kids' Music Day
8th: Universal Music Day
10th: Hug a Drummer Day
17th: International Cassette Store Day
23rd: National iPod Day
24th: Record Store Day
25th: Punk for a Day Day
As a child, Frederic Chopin would cry when he heard music.
Grover Cleveland was the only president to be married in the White House. He was friends with William Steinway, who was the head of the piano firm of the same name, and Steinway gave the couple a Steinway grand piano as a wedding gift.
Little interest was shown for Bartolomeo Cristofori’s original piano, so he went back to making other kinds of stringed instruments. He died in 1731 at the age of 75.
I didn't take many photos in September, so in honor of Halloween, here are some of my favorite black cat photos. Have a great month!
To the best of my knowledge, the music trivia and "factoids" within Pianotes are true, but I can’t guarantee it.