"Timpani and Percussion" by Jeremy Montagu

Timpani and Percussion Jeremy Montagu

Yale Musical Instrument Series
Publication date:
11 May 2002
Yale University Press
280 pages: 248 x 171mm
40 b/w + 12 color illus.


This fascinating book presents the history of percussion instruments from the Old Stone Age to the present day. Jeremy Montagu, a performer, historian, and curator of musical instruments, discusses common and uncommon percussion instruments from all parts of the world, tracing their development and use through the ages and across cultures.

After exploring the origins and antiquity of percussion instruments, Montagu investigates their appearance in the Middle Ages, in particular the nakers, tabors, cymbals, and triangles that are immediately ancestral to those we use today. He then describes instruments of the Renaissance and Early Baroque, High Baroque (from which we can trace surviving instruments and specific music), Classical, Romantic, and Modern Periods. Montagu follows the development of orchestral and band percussion from the late eighteenth century, moving from the introduction of the “Turkish music” to the modern pop bands, military, marching, and concert bands, and concert and studio orchestras. The book concludes with a wide-ranging survey of world percussion, covering instruments commonly played in schools, colleges, and orchestras. It incorporates appendices on playing techniques, technical matters, and the sociology of drummers, and is abundantly illustrated with rare images.

"Montagu has succeeded admirably, bringing to his task a fine blend of the scholar?s erudition and the working musician?s sensibility. . . . Required reading for all percussionists, and a very useful introduction to the instruments for anyone else."?Choice

?An informative and authoritative guide for those with previous background in these instruments and a serious desire to understand their place in history. . . . In addition to being well written, the books are sturdy and beautifully illustrated. Highly recommended for academic libraries, public libraries where an interest in music is strong, and upper-level music students generally.??Library Journal (starred review) 

"This excellent book is the second published volume in the new Yale Musical Instrument Series . . . The choice of Jeremy Montagu to write a historical overview of timpani and percussion instruments was brilliant?he brings a unique blend of the professional performer and a dedicated scholar to the task. His more than fifty years' performance experience and his academic acumen shine forth on every page. . . . Montagu's volume succeeds in just about every respect. Even for non-percussionists it makes for informative and enjoyable reading. As a scholar and performer Montagu takes us for a wonderful, rhythmical journey through musical time, from the perspective of one who has been there and just about done it all."?Harrison Powley, Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society

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