THE J. W. PEPPER BLOG | DELIVERING MUSIC SINCE 1876

THE J. W. PEPPER BLOG | DELIVERING MUSIC SINCE 1876

THE J. W. PEPPER BLOG | DELIVERING MUSIC SINCE 1876

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History

Composer Rollo Dilworth: Remembering Moses Hogan

March 13th marked the 62nd birthday of late composer and musical pioneer Moses Hogan. He is considered a pioneer of the modern spiritual, bringing...

Unveiling a Replica of the Washington Family Harpsichord

In February, we celebrate past presidents and their contributions to our national identity. The legacies of our past leaders are played out in history...

Black History Month Songs: Using Music to Teach About the Past

Updated January 2020 The idea for Black History Month was developed during a difficult time for African Americans in the United States. In 1926, segregation...

Roll Out the Accordion – Polka Music and Oktoberfest

Alex Meixner’s hands fly across his accordion when he plays crowd favorites at Oktoberfest celebrations across the country. The talented musician, who is known...

Celebrating Patriotic Music

Each year when the annual celebration of our nation’s birth approaches, patriotic music becomes more prevalent in our daily lives. These songs paint a...

Top 19 Famous Female Composers

Quietly, in places ranging from convents to conservatories to farms, extraordinary women have written innovative music without the benefit of fame. Historical archives hint...

Silent No More: Mount Vernon Makes Harpsichord History

The harpsichord holds an important place in music history. Its unique sound is instantly recognizable, flavoring the works of countless composers from the Renaissance,...

To All Lovers of Song and Music: A Pepper Legacy Film

The American centennial was an exciting time for the nation. Cities and towns bustled with new industry and a brighter outlook replaced the bleak...

A History of Service: Music Education

Education is the lifeblood of any successful society, preserving the best skills and techniques by passing them down to future generations. The music world...

Thespis: In Print for the First Time

Among the many great names in musical theater, English operetta masters William S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan were two of the earliest to gain...

A History of Service: Pepper Instruments

You won’t see a lot of Pepper instruments out in the world these days. All told, the company only manufactured instruments for less than...

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Star-Spangled Banner

We’ve already spent some time exploring the history of The Star-Spangled Banner, but there are still a lot of interesting facts that you may...

The Star-Spangled Banner, 1914 to 2014

The centennial of The Star-Spangled Banner brought a renewed interest in the song and the story of how it came to be written.  Though...

The Star-Spangled Banner, 1814 to 1913

In the 200 years since Francis Scott Key wrote the words to The Star-Spangled Banner (then The Defense of Fort M’Henry), the song has...

Richard Strauss’ 150th Birthday

In 2014 we celebrate the 150th birthday of Richard Strauss (June 11, 1864 – September 8, 1949).  He is considered by many to be...

50 Years of Wingert-Jones Music

It was the Mid-West National Band Clinic, 1964. Merrill Jones sat alone at a table with his publishing company’s entire catalog -- one piece by Claude...

The 300th Birthday of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach

The year 2014 could prove to be significant for the legacy of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach.  The second surviving son of the great Johann...

Three Cheers for the Red, White and Blue!

On June 14, 1777, the Second Continental Congress authorized a brand-new flag - the Stars and Stripes -- for a brand-new nation, the United States...

The Rite of Spring at 100

If any piece can be said to define the twentieth century, it’s Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.  The first performance took place almost exactly...

John Cage: Inventor of Genius?

“Of course he’s not a composer, but he’s an inventor — of genius.” – Arnold Schoenberg on John Cage To categorize him as simply “a...

Harmony Singing

Everyone seems to enjoy good harmony singing.  From the Andrew Sisters during World War II, the McGuire Sisters, the Four Lads, the Mills Brothers,...

Porgy and Bess Turn 75!

It seems like there are a few opera productions such as Bizet’s Carmen, Delibes’ Lakme, Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte, and Verdi’s La Traviata that...

The Great American Songbook

When I was in college, one of my music theory professors would begin each class by sitting at the piano and singing a standard...

The Story of John Philip Sousa

John Philip Sousa was born in Washington, D.C. in 1854, on G Street near the Marine Barracks. His father, Antonio, played trombone in the U.S. Marine...