A History of the Trombone, the first title in the new series American Wind Band, is a comprehensive account of the development of the trombone from its initial form as a 14th-century Medieval trumpet to its alterations in the 15th century; from its marginalized use in a particular Renaissance ensemble to its acceptance in various kinds of artistic and popular music in the 19th and 20th centuries. David M. Guion accesses new and important primary source materials to present the full sweep of the instrument's history, placing particular emphasis on the people who played the instrument, the music they performed, and the relevant cultural contexts.
After a general overview, the material is presented in two main sections: the first traces the development of the trombone itself and examines the literature written about it, and the second investigates the history of performance on the instrument—the ensembles it participated in, the occasions in which it took part, the people who played it, and the social, intellectual, political, economic, and technological forces that impinged on that history. Guion analyzes the trombone's place in countries all over the world and in many styles of music, such as art, opera, popular, and world music. An appendix of transcriptions of selected primary source documents, including translations, and a comprehensive bibliography round out this important reference. Fully illustrated with more than 80 images, A History of the Trombone appeals not just to trombonists but to students, scholars, and fans of all musical instruments.
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David M. Guion is a trombonist, musicologist, librarian, and freelance writer. He is the author of The Trombone: Its History and Music, 1697-1811 (1988) and has published articles in such journals as American Music, Early Music, Historic Brass Society Journal, Journal of Band Research, and Journal of Musicological Research.Review:
Summing Up: Recommended. (CHOICE)
A History of the Trombone might be best characterized as the next step in English language, historical trombone scholarship, a large step taken by a trusted scholar writing in a plain, straight forward style, not vernacular, not stuffy, not verbose nor swimming in jargon. At the end of the 20th century it takes into account and sums up the research work done to date, evaluates it and draws conclusions. The nine page overview is worth the price of the whole book and will certainly become the dab hand of short trombone histories. This is an important resource, destined to become a staple reference for years to come. (International Trombone Association Journal)
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