The Trombone Trevor Herbert

Yale Musical Instrument Series
Publication date:
17 Jan 2006
336 pages: 234 x 189 x 31mm
60 black & white illustrations, 12 colour images

This is the first fully 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. It explores the origins of the instrument, its invention in the fifteenth century, and its story up to modern times. And it reveals the hidden histories of the trombone and its players in different periods and different countries. The book looks not only at the trombone within classical music, but at its place in jazz, popular music, popular religion and light music. Herbert examines the development of written repertoires in the sixteenth century, the 'golden age' of the instrument in the seventeenth century, its descent into obscurity in the eighteenth century and its re-emergence in the expanded symphony and opera orchestras and military bands of the Romantic era. The popular music explosion of the nineteenth-century brought amateur players and showmen soloists. The impact of jazz was fundamental to the trombone, providing an alternative to the conservatoire tradition. By the late twentieth century its 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 has written The British Brass Band: A Musical and Cultural History, and co-edited The Cambridge Companion to Brass Instruments

ÒTrombonists have, by and large, proven remarkably inept at documenting their instrumentÕs history. . . . Thankfully, Trevor Herbert has righted a centuries-old wrong. . . . It is an astounding contribution, drawing on a myriad of sources, and if you are willing to put the time in you will have plenty of stories with which to naughtily wow your colleagues during the next 100 barsÕ rest. . . . Much better than anything out there. This is a great book, and I gave a jolly big glissando to the Open UniversityÕs professor of music.ÓÑLuke Harley, Classical Music

"This is a great book and one that no trombone player or teacher should be without. Herbert deserves the thanks of trombonists everywhere."ÑMusic Teacher

"Herbert has, I believe, succeeded wonderfully well in writing a book that is rigorously researched, academic and authoritative, but is also extensively illustrated, eminently readable and contained within such a wide musical history, social and cultural context that it should entertain and inform readers well beyond a limited 'market' of trombonists and musicologists."ÑBrass Band World