Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Piano: History and Development

History and Development

Books, DVDs, magazines and journals on the history and development of the piano


Books & DVDs


Selected books and DVDs from the library's collection
Find more library books and dvds like these
Glenn Gould: The Performer in the Work: A Study in Performance Practice by Kevin Bazzana
ML417.G6785 B3 1997  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_glenngould.jpg From Library Journal:
"Not another biographical tribute, this is instead a detailed critical study of Gould the musical interpreter, complete with a CD of pertinent recordings. Examining recorded performances occasionally note by note the author analyzes Gould's interpretations first in light of their faithfulness to the printed score and then in a historical and aesthetic context..." - Timothy J. McGee, Univ. of Toronto
More about this book: 
Jazz Piano: A Jazz History by Billy Taylor
ML700.T39 1983  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_jazzpiano.jpg Staff Summary:
Through his career Billy Taylor documented the progression of jazz and sees it as America's classical music.
More about this book: 
The Piano: Its Story from Zither to Grand by David S. Grover
ML650.G76 1978  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_thepianofromzithertogrand.jpg Staff Summary:
Written by a piano manufacturer, this is the story of the piano from its primeval mechanical beginnings from the zither to the clavichord, the harpsichord, spinet, and our various renditions of the piano. He discusses the piano's technical development and describes the construction of the contemporary piano.
More about this book: 
Music for Piano: A Short History by F.E. Kirby
ML700.K55 1995  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_musicforpiano.jpg From Google Books:
"This historical survey focuses on music for piano solo but also includes important compositions for piano duet and two pianos. Scholarly yet readable, it covers the entire repertoire from the Renaissance to the late 20th century and incorporates a bibliography of 1,100 sources for further study."
More about this book: 
88: The Giants of Jazz Piano by Robert L. Doerschuk
ML397.D64 2001  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_88giantsofjazz.jpg From Google Books:
"This handsome, insightful hardcover volume delves deep into the music of 88 visionaries who have made an indelible mark on the world of jazz through their mastery of the piano's 88 keys... Seven major figures are covered in depth: Jelly Roll Morton, Earl Hines, Art Tatum, Thelonious Monk, Bud Powell, Keith Jarrett and Cecil Taylor..." - Dick Hyman
More about this book: 
The Cambridge Companion to the Piano edited by David Rowland
ML650.C36 1998  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_cambridgecompanion.jpg From Google Books:
"The Cambridge Companion to the Piano is an informative and practical guide to one of the world's most popular instruments. This collection of specially commissioned essays offers an accessible introduction to the history of the piano, performance styles, and its vast repertoire..."
More about this book: 
Stride!: Fats, Jimmy, Lion, Lamb, and All the Other Ticklers by John L. Fell and Terkild Vinding
ML397.F45 1999  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_stride.jpg Staff Summary:
Documents the stride piano's history from minstrel shows and ragtime to its beginnings in Harlem. The time period stride developed was from World War I to the Great Depression. This book discusses the greats that made stride piano including Eubie Blake, Luckey Roberts through Willie 'the Lion Smith' and Duke Ellington.
More about this book: 
Twentieth-Century Piano Music by David Burge
ML707.B87 2004  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_twentiethcenturypianomusic.jpg From
"In Twentieth-Century Piano Music, David Burge offers a personal and inviting overview of the often challenging music written for solo piano during this century, an artistic response by a pianist and educator widely acclaimed for introducing much of this literature to the repertoire. Divided into four sections, each covering a key historical period, the text examines the development of different styles and compositional techniques, and integrates historical and artistic details with a sophisticated and accessible approach to the music."
More about this book: 
The Book of the Piano edited by Dominic Gill
ML650 .B66 1981  Check Availability
Image:Book_of_the_piano.jpg‎ From Google Books:
"Explains how the piano works, shows a variety of piano designs, discusses modern, classical, and jazz piano music, and offers profiles of famous composers and pianists."
More about this book: 
The Evolution of Solo Jazz Piano by Bill Dobbins
LVD 483  Check Availability
Image:Evolution_of_solo_Jazz_piano.jpg‎ From
"The Evolution of Solo Jazz Piano is a study of solo piano styles developed by 24 of the most influential solo pianists from 1900 to the present. In order to clearly illustrate the specific contributions of the various pianists, Bill Dobbins composed a theme based on the well known standard 'All Of Me'. By applying the stylistic approaches of the different pianists to the same theme, one becomes aware of the subtle yet [evocative] elements of each individual style."
A History of Pianoforte-Playing and Pianoforte-Literature by C. F. Weitzmann
ML700 .W45 1969  Check Availability
Image:History_of_pianoforte_playing.jpg‎ From the Author's Preface and Introduction to the book:
"Hitherto, orderly historical view, comprehending the entire field of clavier-literature, and at the same time calling to mind the names of those masters to whose activity we owe the perfection and extension of our art, has been wanting. It is the purpose of the present work to bridge over this sensible gap in writing devoted to the history of music."
More about this book: 
History of the Piano by Ernest Closson; translated by Delano Ames
ML650 .C56 1947  Check Availability
Image:History_of_the_piano.jpg‎ From the book's introduction:
Instead of a comprehensive history, the authors "have preferred to draw the broad outlines, to emphasize the chief stages of the instrument's history, to show the bonds and interchange between the principal [centers] of its manufacture, to point out the relationship between the instrument and the music written for it."
A Left Hand Like God: A History of Boogie-Woogie Piano by Peter J. Silvester
ML747 .S55 1989  Check Availability
Image:A_left_hand_like_God.jpg‎ From Google Books:
"The Story of Boogie-Woogie: A Left Hand Like God examines the socio-historical background of the boogie-woogie piano style, from its early appearances in the barrelhouses of lumber, turpentine, and railroad camps in the southern United States, to its emergence at rent parties in Chicago and St. Louis, to its rise as a popular form of music in the nightclubs of New York, to its status as an international craze during World War II."
More about this book: 
Men, Women and Pianos: A Social History by Arthur Loesser
ML650 .L64  Check Availability
Image:Men_women_and_pianos.jpg‎ From
"An internationally renowned pianist presents a delightful 'piano's-eye view' of Western European and American social history from the 16th through 20th centuries. With wit and erudition, Loesser traces the history of the instrument's design and manufacture and its music, from the clavichord and harpsichord to the modern spinet and concert grand."
More about this book: 
Pianos, Pianists, and Sonics by G.A. Briggs
ML650 .B75 1951  Check Availability
Image:Pianos_pianists_and_sonics.jpg‎ From the book's dust jacket:
"Written in non-technical terms, this book is intended for all music lovers and sound enthusiasts. It deals with the piano from every angle--evolution, construction, touch and tone, tuning, toning, etc."
Pianos and Their Makers: A Comprehensive History of the Development of the Piano from the Monochord to the Concert Grand Player Piano by Alfred Dolge
ML652 .D65 1972  Check Availability
Image:Pianos_and_Their_Makers.jpg‎ From Google Books:
"Leading inventor offers full history of piano technology, earliest models to 1910. Types, makers, components, mechanisms, musical aspects. 300 illustrations."
More about this book: 
Steinway & Sons by Ronald V. Ratcliffe
ML424 .S74 R38 1989  Check Availability
Image:Steinway_&_sons.jpg‎ From
"The exquisite pianos produced by Steinway & Sons are revered by musicians, music lovers, and collectors around the world. [Published] to coincide with the firms 150th anniversary, this beautiful new edition celebrates the history of the family and the instruments it creates with fully updated text and a striking new cover. Interweaving the stories of the pianos, their creation, and the music they inspire with more than 200 photos, designs, sketches, and paintings, Steinway pays elegant tribute to these incomparable instruments."
More about this book: 

Magazines and Journals

Selected magazines and journals from the library's collection
Find more library magazines and journals like these
Periodicals  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_mag_clavier.jpg From
"Clavier features articles on both the artistic and practical aspects of teaching keyboard instruments, as well as news and music and equipment reviews."
Clavier Companion 
Periodicals  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_mag_claviercompanion.jpg From the Frances Clark Center for Keyboard Pedagogy website:
"Brought to you by the experts at the Frances Clark Center, Clavier Companion is the only publication in North America devoted exclusively to the concerns of the piano/keyboard performer and teacher. Readers receive the very best in cogent, focused, and practical articles on music and teaching at all levels, in-depth interviews, reviews of new materials, directories of camps and festivals, and penetrating columns."
Periodicals  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_mag_keyboard.jpg From the Keyboard magazine website:
"Keyboard magazine is the definitive source for information on the hottest music and music technology, including keyboards, synths, digital pianos, music software, laptop computers, and sheet music. We cover all the latest artists in rock, pop, electronica, jazz, dance music, and other genres, too."
Contemporary Keyboard 
Periodicals  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_mag_contemporarykeyboard.jpg From the library's holdings:
Contemporary Keyboard is a previous title of Keyboard magazine. The library has issues from 1975-1981.
Piano & Keyboard: The Bimonthly Piano Quarterly 
Periodicals  Check Availability
Image:Piano_history_mag_pianoandkeyboard.jpg From the library's holdings:
The library contains Piano & Keyboard issues from 1993-2000.