The Trombone Trevor Herbert

Yale Musical Instrument Series
Publication date:
07 Nov 2017
Yale University Press
336 pages:
60 b-w + 12 color illus.
Sales territories:


This is the first comprehensive study of the trombone in English. It covers the instrument, its repertoire, the way it has been played, and the social, cultural, and aesthetic contexts within which it has developed. The book explores the origins of the instrument, its invention in the fifteenth century, and its story up to modern times, also revealing hidden aspects of the trombone in different eras and countries.
The book looks not only at the trombone within classical music but also at its place in jazz, popular music, popular religion, and light music. Trevor Herbert examines each century of the trombone’s development and details the fundamental impact of jazz on the modern trombone. By the late twentieth century, he shows, jazz techniques had filtered into the performance idioms of almost all styles of music and transformed ideas about virtuosity and lyricism in trombone playing.

Trevor Herbert is professor of music at the Open University. Formerly a professional trombone player, he is the author of The British Brass Band: A Musical and Cultural History and The Cambridge Companion to Brass Instruments.

Received rating of "Outstanding" from the 2007 University Press Books Committee

"The Trombone is an exceptional single source on the instrument. . . . This book is essential for all music collections; it will benefit any library or individual user with an interest in trombone methods and history."—Donald Babcock, Fontes Artis Musicae

“. . . an astounding contribution, drawing on a myriad of sources . . . you will have plenty of stories with which to naughtily wow your colleagues during the next 100 bars’ rest. . . . Much better than anything out there. . . a great book . . .”—Luke Harley, Classical Music