Background dates for Popular Music Studies

Collected and prepared by Philip Tagg, Dave Harker and Matt Kelly

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BCE | Year 0 | 900 | 1100 | 1200 | 1300 | 1400 | 1500 | 1550 | 1600 | 1625 | 1650 | 1675 | 1700 | 1725 | 1750 | 1775 | 1800 | 1825 | 1850 |
1860 | 1870 | 1880 | 1890 | 1900 | 1910 | 1920 | 1930 | 1940 | 1950 | 1955 | 1960 | 1965 | 1970 | 1975 | 1980 | 1985 | 1990 | 1995 | 2000 |

Top of list


c. -10,000

Cave paintings, Ariθge

c.-4000

End of palaeolithic period in Mediterranean

c.-4000

Sumerians settle on site of Babylon

3500-2800

King Menes the Fighter unites Upper and Lower Egypt; 1st and 2nd dynasties

c. -3300

Neolithic period in western Europe (ends 1700 BC)

 

Harps, flutes, lyres and double clarinets played in Egypt

-3000-2500

BC: Old Kingdom of Egypt (3rd to 6th dynasty), including Cheops (4th dynasty: 2700-2675 BC), whose pyramid conforms in layout and dimension to astronomical measurements. Sphinx built. Egyptians invade Palestine. Bronze Age in Bohemia. Systematic astronomical observations in Egypt, Babylonia, India and China

-2200-525

Dynasty of Pharaohs (god-kings)

-3000-2000

`Sage Kings’ in China, then the Yao, Shun and Hsai (-2000 to -1760) dynasties

-3000-2500

Chinese court musician Ling-Lun cuts first bamboo pipe.

-2500-2000

Pentatonic scale formalised. Chinese emperor checked if court and village songs corresponded with the five notes. Bronze age in Britain

 

Shang dynasty in China. Decline of Babylon. 18th dynasty in Egypt: irrigation, trigonometry, sun dials. Indus culture flourishes. Iron in China, India, Mesopotamia, Egypt. Minoan culture in Crete. Bronze age in western Europe. Stonehenge

 

Moses leads Israelites out of Egypt. Trojan war. Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon. 19th-21st dynasties in Egypt. Tutankhamen’s tomb

 

Cretan-Mycenaean cultures flourish. Trojan war. Foundation of Corinth

 

Teotihuacan Sun Pyramid (Mexico)

c. -1000-500

Indian Rigveda (Veda of Humns) and Samaveda (Veda of Chants) developed (forerunners to Jewish & Gregorian chants?)

 

Phoenicians main traders into western Mediterranean

 

Temple and Song of Solomon

 

India: transmigration of souls (Brahminism and Atmanism) and caste system. China: rational philosophy of Chou dynasty gains over mysticism of earlier Shang (Yin) dynasty. Chinese textbook of maths and physics

 

Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey

 

Iron and steel production in Indo-Caucasian culture

 

Pentatonic and heptatonic scales in Babylonian music.
Earliest recorded music - hymn on a tablet in Sumeria (cuneiform).
Greece: devel of choral and dramtic music.
Rome founded (Ab urbe condita - 753 BC)

 

Confucius dies (b. -551)

 

Sappho of Lesbos. Lao-tse (Chinese philosopher). Israel in Babylon. Massilia (Marseille) founded

c. -600.

Shih Ching (Book of Songs) compiles material from Hsia and Shang dynasties (2205-1122 BC)

-517

Lao Tzu (founder of Taoism, b. -604, d.)

c. -550

Pythagoras `discovers’ octave
Indian vina (2 hollow gourds connected by strings and a bamboo reed) - origin of many hollow string instruments?

c. -500

Celts arrive in Britain

c. -440

Sophocles’ Theban trilogy

c. -340

Plato’s Republic

c. -330

Artistotle’s Politics and Poetics

c. -320

Aristoxenos `Harmonics’. Defines rhythm as tripartite: speech, melody, movement

-221

Ch’in dynasty in China

c. -200

`Natyasastra’ (Indus) codifies Hindu classical music practices (e.g. for epics Ramayama, Mahabharata and Bhagavad-gita)

-215

Great Wall of China built (2250 km)

c. -100

Emperor Wu founds Imperial Office of Music (Yόeh-fu), attached to the Office of Weights and Measures, for standardising pitch and supervising music

-55

Roman invasion of Briatin

-5

Christ born

Top of list

0022

Greeks settle in Spain, Southern Italy, Sicily. First Greek iron utensils

0030

Crucifixion of Christ

0058

Buddhism introduced into China

0300

Maya civilisation flourishes

0324

Christianity official religion of Roman Empire

0340

Definite split of Roman Empire in two

0350

Foundation of Schola Cantorym for church song in Rome

0378

St Ursus builds Ravenna cathedral

0385

Roman legions evacuate Britain

0386

Hymn singing introduced by Ambrosius, bishop of Milan

0410

Alaric and Goths sack Rome

0432

St Patrick starts mission to Ireland

0440

Jutes, Angles and Saxons arrive and control most of England by 800

0450

Responsorial singing (precentor and congregation) after Jewish pattern common in Roman church

0476

Goths conquer Rome: end of Western Roman Empire

0520

Boethius: De institutione musica - Greek music theory to Latin (letter notation, misunderstanding of modes)

0563

St Columba (Irish abbot) on Iona to convert Picts and Scots

0570

Muhammed the prophet (b)

0596

Pope Gregory dispatches St Augustine of Canterbury as missionary to Britain

0600

Antiphonar - Pope Gregory’s collection of church chants. Refounds Schola Cantorum in Rome

—

Book printing in China

0619

Orchestras of hundreds of players in China

0622

Originum sive etymologiarum libri XX - encyclopedia of arts and sciences by Isidore of Seville

0632

Muhammed the prophet (d)

0642

Arabs conquer Egypt (642), Byzantium (655), Crete (674), Tunis (700), most of Pain (718)

0650

Neumes (notation for groups of notes) used until 1050

0685

Founding of Winchester cathedral

0687

Sussex, last heathen kingdom in England, converted to Christianity

0715

Moslem empire extends from Pyrenees to China with Damascus as capital

0725

Court orchestra of Emperor Ming-Huang is high culture of T’and dynasty: no harmony or polyphony, five note scale without semitones: flutes, guitars, bells, gongs, drums

0750

Arab alchemist discovers effect of light on silver nitrate

—

Gregorian church mnusic in England, France, Germany

0787

Harun al-Raschid caliph of Baghdad (to 809) - golden period of Arabic learning

0790

Schools for church music established at Paris, Kφln, Soissons & Metz under supervision of Schola Cantorum (Rome)

0800

Charlemagne crowned first Holy Roman Emperor

—

City of Machu Picchu (Inca, Peru) - rediscovered 1911

0814

Arabs take over Indian numerals (incl 0) to multiply by ten

0825

c825. Ishaq-al-Mausili (767-850), Arab singer and music theorist (cf.900)

0841

Vikings invade what is now Normandy

0850

c. Greek musical theory translated into Arabic and developed (e.g. Treatise concerning the Inner Knowledge of Melodies by Al-Kindi (d.874). Al-musiqi important subject in Arab universities.

0860

Danes sack Winchester. Constant raids until c1010

0870

Musica enchiriadis - MS using Latin letters for musical notation

0890

Rathbert of St Gallen, hymn writer and composer

Top of list

0900

c. Ibn al-Munajjim (d.912) Risala fi’l-musiqi (=Book about Music) showing Arab classical scales as Pythagorean but ascending

0935

Odo de Cluny: Enchiridion musices

0940

Postal and news services in the caliph’s empire have at their disposal c. 1000 stations

—

Manufactories of linens and woolens in Flanders

0942

Arabs bring kettledrums and trumpets to Europe

0950

Al-Farabi (d), working at Aleppo and Cσrdoba, author Kitab al-musiqi al-kabir (=The Great Book on Music)

1000

Musical notation system improved by Guido d’Arezzo

1015

At Poposa monastery (Ravenna), sight singing is introduced

1026

Guido d’Arezzo introduces solmisation (do re mi fa so la)

1045

Split between Roman and Eastern Orthodox churches

1050

Harp arrives in Europe (Arabic). Time values given to notes

1065

Consecration of Westminster Abbey

1066

Battle of Hastings

1071

Constatine the African (1020-1087) brings Greek medicine (via Arabs) to Western Europe

1081

Commercial treaty between Venice and Byzantium

1094

El Cid takes Valencia from the Moors

1096

First Crusade begins

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1100

Secular music school of St Martial at Limoges uses polyphonic styles

1119

Bologna University founded

1130

Troubadour and trouvθre music evolves

1150

Paris University founded

1151

Leonin and ars antiqua

1155

c.1155 Minnelieder, Minnesinger (e.g. Kurenberg)

1167

Oxford University established

1199

Founding of Liverpool

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1200

Cambridge University founded

—

Faux bourdon style in GB. Carmina Burana (Latin monastic songs) in Germany

1201

Faηade of Notre Dame completed

1215

Magna Carta

1218

Genghis Khan captures Persia

1225

Roman de la rose

—

Sumer is icumen in

1233

Coal mined for first time in Newcastle

1237

Mongols capture Moscow

1238

Adam de la Halle (b)

1249

Roger Bacon records the existence of explosives

1250

Establishment of four national colleges at Paris University

—

Magister Perotinus (Notre Dame, Ars antiqua)

—

c. Music faculty at Salamanca University

1265

Franco of Cologne, Pierre de la Croix writing motets (musica mensurata)

1267

R Bacon (1214-1294) on lenses & distorted images

1271

Marco Polo (1254-1324) journeys to China (return 1295)

1277

Roger Bacon imprisoned for heresy

1285

Adam de la Halle (1238-1287) Le jeu de Robin et Marion

1287

Adam de la Halle (d)

1289

Block printing in Ravenna

1291

Arabs capture Acre. End of crusades

—

York Minster nave erected

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1307

Dante starts Divina Commedia (ends 1321)

1313

German Grey Friar Berthold Schwarz reinvents gunpowder

1322

Pope forbids use of counterpoint in church music

1325

Tournai Mass - first polyphonic mass

1327

Aztecs establish Mexico City

1329

Philippe de Vitry coins ars nova (v. contrapuntal style)

1330

Paris Musicians’ Guild (Les mιnιtriers) formed (ends 1773)

1331

First record of weaving in England (York)

1332

Black Death (bubonic plague) originates in India

1348

Black death sweeps across Europe

—

Order of the Garter (!)

1349

Black death kills 1/3 of English population

1351

1347-1351 Black Death kills 75,000,000

1354

Mechanical clock at Strasbourg Cathedral

1360

Lute (via Arabs) playing popular in Europe

—

Beginnings of development of clavichord and cembalo

1361

Black Death reappears in England

1365

Guillaume de Machaut (1300-1377) Mass for 4 Voices

1378

Papal schism (until 1417)

1381

Venice wins 100-yrs war with Genoa - flourishing trade

—

Peasants’ Revolt under Wat Tyler

1382

Wyclif (church reformer) expelled from Oxford by London synod

1384

Incorporation (Guild) of Fishmongers founded

1387

Chaucer (1340-1400): The Canterbury Tales

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1411

London Guildhall built (finished 1426)

1414

Medici of Florence bankers to papacy (until 1476)

1431

Jeanne d’Arc burnt at stake

—

First German peasants’ revolt

1437

fl John Dunstable (1369-1453)

1440

Henri Arnault de Zwolle describes technique of, but does not construct, the piano (see 1709)

1450

Gutenberg prints the Constance Mass Book

—

Battista’s camera lucida (lense & prism)

1451

Glasgow University founded

1453

Turks take Constantinopel, coverting St Sophia Basilica into a mosque

1455

Venetian navigator Cadamoto explores Sιnιgal river

1456

Turks conquer Athens (burning Acropolis in 1458)

1463

Turks conquer Bosnia (also Herzegovina in 1467)

1465

First music printing

1470

Portuguese navigators reach the Gold Coast

1471

Jakob Obrecht: St Matthew Passion (Latin text)

1472

Start of Portuguese Empire (Fernando Po)

1473

Woodcut music printing (Eslingen, Germany)

1474

William Caxton prints 1st book in English (at Bruges)

1477

Torquemada (1420-1498) in full swing with the inquisition

1483

Botticelli paints Birth of Venus

1484

Portuguese navigator Diego Cam discovers mouth of Congo river

—

Johannes de Tinctoris (1436-1511): De inventione et usu musicae

1492

Columbus’s voyage to Caribbean

—

Spanish conquer Granada and extinguish Moorish kingdom in Spain

—

Turks invade Hungary

—

da Vinci draws flying machine

1493

Pope Alexander VI divides lands found in Americas between Spain and Portugal

—

Peasants’ revolt in Alsace and S W Germany

—

Turks invade Dalmatia and Croatia

—

Heinrich Isaak court composer in Bavaria

1495

Greek and Latin classics published by Aldine Press, Venice

—

da Vinci paints The Last Supper

—

Bosch paints The Garden of Worldly Delights

—

Josquin des Prθs (1450-1521) appointed organist at Cambrai

1498

Vasco da Gama, Portuguese navigator (1469-1524) reaches India

1499

Oxford University institutes degrees in music

Top of list

1500

Josquin des Prθs at court of Louis XII

—

da Vinci’s Camera Obscura

—

Petrucci’s movable type music printing (Venice)

1502

Petrucci publishes 1st Book of Masses by J d Prθs

1503

da Vinci paints Mona Lisa

1505

Thomas Tallis (b)

1506

Niccolς Machiavelli at 37 creates Florentine militia, first national army in Italy

1509

Beginnings of slave trade; Bartolomι de las Casas, bishop of Chiapas, states that each Spanish settler should bring a certain number of Negro slaves to the New World

1511

Portuguese reach Malacca

—

Diego de Velasquez de Cuellar occupies Cuba

1512

Royal Navy builds double-deck ships with 70 guns, 1,000 tons

—

Copernicus states that earth and other planets turn around sun

1513

Portuguese under Jorge Alvarez reach Canton. Spanish reach Florida

—

1st known popular printed song published in GB: John Skelton’s Ballade of the Scottyshe Kynges

1515

Spanish under Diaz de Solis reach mouth of Rio de la Plata

1517

Luther’s 95 Theses

—

Archduke Charles grants monopoly of slave trade to Flemish merchants. License to import 4,000 African slaves to Spanish American colonies granted to Lorens de Gominot

1518

Spanish reach Yucatαn and Mexico

1521

Luther imprisoned

1522

Magellan sails round the world

1524

Johann Walther (1496-1570) produces, in collaboration with Martin Luther, the hymnal Geystlich Gesangk-Bόchleyn

1525

Juan Luis Vives demands state help for the poor

1527

Adrian Willaert (1490-1562) maestro di capella at St Mark’s, Venice

1528

Erasmus: Ciceronianus - satire on Latin scholarship

—

Atttaignant 1st book published

1530

Portuguese colonise Brazil

1531

Halley’s comet arouses wave of superstition

1533

Henry VIII excommunicated

—

Pizarro executes the Incas of Peru

1534

Luther completes German bible

—

Jesuit order founded by Ignatius Loyola

—

Susato starts publishing in Antwerp

1535

Jacque Cartier’s second voyage: Quιbec et Montrιal

1536

Jean Calvin: Christianae religionis Institutio

—

Pedro de Mendoza founds Buenos Aires and sends expeditions in search of Peru

—

First song book with lute accompaniment published in Spain

1537

Gerardus Mercator produces first map of Flanders

—

Conservatoires of music founded in Naples for boys, in Venice for girls

1539

Spain annexes Cuba

—

Olaus Magnus produces map of world

1541

John Knox (1505-1572) leads Calvinist Reformation in Scotland

1543

Parliament Act restricts ballad printing

—

Calvin, Geneva Psalter

1545

Council of Trent (Concilium Tridentinum) meets to discuss Reformation and Counter Reformation (-1564)

1546

Mercator states that earth has magnetic poles

—

Abortive attempts to find El Dorado in Venezuela

1548

Louis Bourgeois (1510-1561): Psalter

1549

Jesuit missionaries to South America

—

Thomι de Souza founds S<176>o Salvador (Bahνa)

Top of list

1551

Palestrina made music director at St Peter’s, Rome

1555

Aztec dictionary published

1556

Lassus publishes his first book of motets

1557

State bankruptcy in Spain and France

—

Stationers’ Guild mus print monopoly GB

1558

English lose Calais; Elizabeth I ascends throne

—

Pieter Breughel paints Children’s Games

—

Gioseffo Zarlino (1517-1590): Istituzioni armoniche defines modern major and minor scales

1560

Church of Scotland founded

—

Lassus made court Kapellmeister in Mόnchen

1562

John Hawkins makes first journey to New World; starts slave trade between Guinea and West Indies

1563

Breughel paints The Tower of Babel

1564

English Merchant Adventurers granted new royal charter

—

Scots’ Psalter (Dunfermline?)

—

First of Andrea Amati’s violins

1565

Palestrina: Missa Papζ Marcelli

1572

William Byrd and Thomas Tallis organists at the Chapel Royal

1574

Portuguese found S<176>o Paolo and colonise Angola

1575

Paris pop. 300,000; London 180,000; Cologne 35,000

1580

Francis Drake returns from world circumnavigation

—

Jan Pietrszoon Sweelink organist at Dude Kerk, Amsterdam

1581

Greensleeves mentioned for first time

—

Vicenzo Gallilei (Gallileo’s Dad, 1520-1591), lutenist and scientist, engraves music examples. Publishes Dialogo della musica antica e della moderna

1583

English merchant expeditions to Mesopotamia, India and Persian Gulf

1585

Bartholomew Newsam constructs first English travelling and standing clocks

—

Thomas Tallis (b. 1505) dies

1588

Spanish Armada defeated. English Guinea Company founded

1590

First Shakespeare plays performed

—

Coal mining starts in the Ruhr

1592

Portuguese settle at MObasa

—

Monteverdi’s 3rd Book of Madrigals

1593

Saint Ambrogio Bank founded in Milan

1594

English navigator James Lancaster breaks Portuguese trade monopoly in India

—

G P da Palestrina (b. 1525) dies

—

Orlando di Lasso dies (b. 1532)

1595

Dutch start colonising East Indies

1596

English pacification of Ireland

1597

Thomas Morley (1557-1603): A Plaine and Easie Introduction to Practicall Musick

—

Dowland: First Booke of Songs

1598

4th world circumnavigation by Olivier van Noort

1599

Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, As You Like It and Twelfth Night

159s

Anti minstrel act from Queen Elizabeth I: they shall be grievously whipped and burned through the gristle of the ear with a hot iron of the compass of an inch about. The third offence could bring death without benefit of clergy or privelege of sanctuary

Top of list

1600

English East India Company founded. Amsterdam Bank founded

—

Dutch opticians invent telescope

—

Approximate populations (in millions): France 16, Germany 14.5, Poland 11, Spain 8, Hapsburg dominions 5.5, England and Ireland 5.5, Holland 3

1602

Dutch East India Company founded with capital of £540,000 in Batavia: first modern public company

1605

Santa Fι (now New Mexico) founded

—

Barbados claimed as English colony

—

English government farms all customs revenue to a London consortium for merchants for an annual rent (-1671)

1606

G Gallilei invents proportional compass

1607

Jamestown landing: Virginia Company of London, granted royal charter, sent 120 colonists

—

Monteverdi’s Orfeo

1608

O’Dogherty rebellion in Ireland fails

1610

Gallileo Gallilei’s telescope

—

Parthenia printed & published

1614

Virginian colonists prevent French from settling Nova Scotia, Maine and Maryland

1615

English fleet defeat Portuguese off coast of Bombay

—

G Gallileo faces Inquisition

1616

Sir Walter Raleigh released from tower to lead expedition in Guiana to find El Dorado. James I sells peerages to improve disastrous financial position

—

William Shakespeare dies (b. 1564)

—

Collegium musicum founded at Prague

1618

Thirty years war starts (ends 1648)

1619

First African slaves on North American continent arrive in Virginia

—

Fitzwilliam Virginal Book (see 1816)

1621

Michael Praetorius dies (b. 1621)

1623

New Netherlands (from Chesapeake Bay to Maine) formally organised as Dutch province

—

William Byrd dies (b. 1542)

1624

Monteverdi’s Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda

Top of list

1625

French occupy the Antilles and Cayenne

—

Orlando Gibbons dies (b. 1583)

1626

Knighthoods for all Englishmen with property over £40/yr to help royal revenue

—

Peter Minuit (director-general of Ducth West India Company’s N Amer. settlement0, buys the entire Island of Manhattan from Native Americans for 60 guilders’ worth of goods. New Amsterdam founded

—

Professorship of music at Oxford

—

John Dowland dies

1628

Ignαcio Loyola canonised by Gregory XV (!)

—

Pilgrim Fathers, leaving Plymouth (Devon) in the Mayflower, land at New Plymouth (Massachussets) to found Plymouth colony

1629

Heinrich Schόtz: Symphoniζ Sacrζ

1630

Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden marches his army into Germany (30 yrs war)

—

Beginning of public advertising in Paris

1633

Galileo forced by inquisition to abjure theories of Copernicus

1635

Frescobaldi’s Fiori musicali di toccate (influential on J S Bach)

1636

Welsh Puritan Roger Williams (1603-1683) banished from Massachusetts; establishes Providence (Rhode Island); proclaims complete religious freedom

1637

Extermination of Christianity in Japan; prohibition of foreign books and of contact with Europeans (Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, English)

1639

Acadιmie Franηaise compiles first dictionary of French language

1640

John Bull dies

1641

Rembrandt paints The Night Watch

1642

UK Civil War begins (ends 1646)

1643

Girolamo Frescobaldi dies (b. 1583)

1644

Renι Descartes Principia philosophica (incl. Cogito, ergo sum)

1645

Schόtz: Die 7 Worte Christi am Kreuz

1646

English Civil War ends with defeat of royalists

—

Athanasius Kircher (see 1650) constructs first laterna magica for projection purposes

—

Kircher’s Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae (Rome)

1648

Peace of Westphalia ends thirty years war (started 1608). German population shrinks from 17 million (1618) to 8 mill due to war, famine and plague

1649

Republic in England until 1660. Charles I beheaded

—

Cromwell invades Ireland, sacking Drogheda and Wexford

—

Free enterprise receives state support in England

—

Anti ballad singers Act of Parliament. Magistrates instructed to flog and imprison them at sight and to confiscate their stock

—

Cyrano de Bergerac’s Voyage dans la Lune

Top of list

1650

Beginning of Japanese No drama

—

Quaker movement starts

—

Extermination of Native Americans starts

—

German mathematician and humanist Athanasius Kircher (1601-1680) completes Musurgia universalis, in which he describes rudiments of musical acoustics, categorises current musical styles (incl non-European) and prefigures Theory of the Affects (see 1646)

1651

Dutch settle Cape of Good Hope

—

John Playford starts music publishing

1652

John Hilton publishes Catch as Catch Can (collection of rounds, etc.)

1653

Lully director of les petits-violins du roi

1655

Cromwell dissolves Parliament, prohibits Anglican services and readmits Jews into England

—

English capture Jamaica

1656

Thomas Tomkins dies

1657

Dutch scientist Christiann Huygens (1629-1695) designs pendulum clocks

1659

Alessandro Scarlatti born

—

Henry Purcell born

1660

Dutch peasant farmers (Boeren) settle in South Africa

1661

With Long Parliament dissolved (1660), Charles II is crowned. He gets Tangier, Bombay and £300,000 from Portugal as dowry of Catherine of Braganηa (marriage 1662)

—

Acadιmie Royale de Danse founded by Louis XIV

1663

Danish physician Nicolaus Steno determines that the heart is a muscle

—

Sir Roger L’Estrange sole ballad licenser GB. Position lasts till 1694

1664

British annexe New Netherlands and rename New Amsterdam (surrendered by Peter Stuyvesant) New York

—

French horn (cor de chasse/Walthorn) first used as orchestral instrument

1665

Moliθre writes Don Juan

1666

Great fire of London: plague wiped out. First Cheddar cheese

—

Stradivari labels his first violin

1667

Johann Kuhnau born

1668

British gain control of Bombay

—

La Fontaine starts on Les Fables

—

Dietrich Buxtehude becomes organist of St Mary’s, Lόbeck

1669

Rembrandt van Rijn dies (b. 1606)

—

Vermeer paints Girl at the Spinet

1670

First major British settlement in Carolina at Charlestown

—

Minute hands first added to watches

1672

Heinrich Schόtz (b. 1585) dies

1673

Matthew Locke: The Present Practice of Music Vindicated

Top of list

1675

Paris population 0.5 mill (1800 650,000; 1930 3 mill)

1677

Spinoza, Dutch-Jewish philosopher, dies

1678

Thomas Britton (1644-1714) introduces weekly concerts in Clerkenwell (London)

—

First German opera house in Hamburg

1680

French organise colonial possessions from Quιbec down to mouth of Mississippi

—

Purcell organist of Westminster Abbey

1681

Female professionals appear for first time in Paris Opera

1682

Versailles becomes royal residence

1683

Turks, having helped Emeric Tφkφlyi to become king in Hungary (after rebellion against Hapsburgs), siege Vienna

—

Newton explains gravitational attraction of sun, moon and earth

1685

Johann Sebastian Bach, Georg Friedrich Hδndel, Domenico Scarlatti born

1686

Roman Catholics readmitted to English army

1687

Venetians, in war against Turks, damage the Athens Acropolis. Turks already at war with Russia

1688

English lords invite William of Orange to be king. William and Mary crowned 1689. Declaration of Rights

1689

Dido & Aeneas (Purcell)

1690

John Locke: An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

—

English population c. 5 mill (1600 was 2.5 mill)

—

Calcutta founded by colonial administrator Job Charnock

—

French engineer Denis Papin (1647-1714) devises pump with piston, raised by steam

—

20 000 slaves in North America. cf. 1780, 1820, 1850

1691

Leibniz: Protagζa on geology

1694

Bank of England founded

1695

State control of mus printing lapses (GB)

—

Henry Purcell (b. 1659) dies

1696

Johann Kuhnau (1660-1722): Frische Clavier-Frόchte, oder sieben Sonaten (the sonata as piece in several contrasting movements)

1697

Last remains of Maya civilisation destroyed by Spanish in Yucatαn

1698

Savery’s Water Pump (see 1690)

Top of list

1701

Music publisher Henry Playford (1657-1709) establishes weekly concerts at Oxford

1703

Samuel Pepys (b. 1633) dies

1705

J S Bach walks 320 km to hear Buxtehude’s Abendmusik in Lόbeck

1706

Marlborough conquers Spanish Netherlands

—

Henry Mill invents carriage springs (GB)

1707

Union between England and Scotland under name Great Britain

1709

14,000 inhabitants of the Palatinate emigrate to N America (c. 100,000 Germans during C18, 5 mill during C19)

—

Malbrouk s’en va-t-en guerre becomes popular after battle of Malplaquet

—

First Copyright Act in Britain

—

Cristofori’s gravicembalo piano e forte

1710

English South Sea Company founded

—

1st copyright law enacted in England

1711

Clarinet in opera orchestra for 1st time (J A Hasse’s Cr<180>sus)

—

English trumpeter John Shore (1662-1752) said to have invented the tuning fork

1712

Slave revolts in New York

—

Arcangelo Corelli: 12 Concerti Grossi

—

Hδndel’s first London opera (Il pastor fido)

1715

Rising of Native Americans in S Carolina

—

First Liverpool dock built

—

Vaudevilles appear in Paris as popular musical comedies

1716

Hapsburgs drive Turks out of Hungary (1716) and Croatia (1717)

—

Couperin: L’art de toucher le clavecin

—

Marius’ piano (France); Schrφter’s piano (Germany) (see 1709)

1717

School attendance made compulsory in Prussia

—

Mother Grand Lodge of Freemasons established in London

—

J S Bach: Orgelbόchlein

—

Hδndel: Water Music

1718

Banknote introduced in England

1719

Ireland declared as inseparable from Britain

—

Daniel Defoe (1661-1731): Robinson Crusoe

1720

South Sea Bubble

1721

Swiss immigrants introduce rifles into N America

—

Bach: Brandenburg Concertos

—

Georg Philipp Telemann arrives in Hamburg as director of music

—

Public concerts held at Boston (MA) and Charleston (SC)

1722

Rameau: Traitι de l’harmonie

—

Bach: Das wohltempeierte Klavier, I

—

Johann Mattheson: Critica Musica

1723

Bach appointed Thomascantor after Telemann refuses job

Top of list

1725

Alessandro Scarlatti (b. 1659) dies

1726

Jonathan Swift: Gulliver’s Travels

—

Voltaire flees to GB; stays until 1729

—

Lloyd’s List published twice weekly

—

Hδndel becomes British subject

1728

John Gay: Beggar’s Opera

1729

Bach: St Matthew Passion

1730

John and Charles Wesley form Methodist sect at Oxford

1732

Covent Garde Opera House opened

—

J G Walther: Musik-Lexikon (first of its kind)

1733

Pergolesi’s La serva padrona, opera buffa 1st performed (Naples)

1735

Hogarth draws The Rake’s Progress

1736

Hard rubber (caoutchouc) (India rubber) comes to England

—

Musschenbrock’s Magic Lantern

1737

Antonio Stradivari dies (b. 1644)

—

John Wesley’s Psalms and Hymns published in Charleston

1738

Papal bull In eminenti against freemasonry

—

John Wesley’s evangelical conversion

—

Bach: B minor Mass

1739

Johann Mattheson: Der vollkommene Kapellmeister

1740

Frederick the Great introduces freedom of press and worship in Prussia

—

Thomas Augustine Arne (1710-1778) writes masque Alfred containing Rule Britannia

1741

Linnζus founds botanical garden in Uppsala

—

Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1675) dies

—

Hδndel composes the Messiah in 10 days. 1st perf in Dublin 1742

—

Johann Joachim Quantz becomes court composer to Frederick the Great

1742

Cotton factories established in Birmingham and Northampton

1743

East India yarns imported into Lancashire for manufacture

1744

God Save the Queen published in Thesaurus Musicus. Magrigal Society, London, founded

1745

The Campbells are Coming published

—

Johann Stamitz (1717-1757) becomes court Kapellmeister in Mannheim

—

Quadrille becomes popular dance in France

—

Vauxhall Gardens in full swing

1746

Denis Diderot (1713-1784): Pensιes philosophiques

—

Joshua Reynolds paints The Eliot Family

—

Charles Edward Stuart defeated at Culloden. Wearing of tartans prohibited in Great Britain (-1782). Bagpipe ban results in mouth music

1747

Bach: Das musikalische Opfer (1747); Die Kunst der Fuge (1749)

—

Hδndel’s Judas Maccabζus at Covent Garden

1748

Isaac Watts (1674-1748), English hymn writer, dies

1749

Georgia becomes Crown Colony

—

Hδndel: Royal Fireworks Music

Top of list

1750

Pergolesi’s La serva padrona 1st performed in London

—

Johann Sebastian Bach (b. 1685) dies

1751

La guerre des bouffons between French and Italian music fans

—

The minuet becomes Europe’s fashionable dance

1752

Great Britain adopts Gregorian calendar on Sep 14 (Sep 3-13 omitted)

—

French Encyclopιdie starts to be published (ends 1772)

1753

Linnζus Species plantorum after Philosophia botanica (1751)

1754

1st iron rolling mill at Fareham (Hampshire)

1755

Dr Samuel Johnson starts his Dictionary of the English Language (ends 1773)

1756

Black hole of Calcutta

—

Seven Year’s War breaks out (Bohemia, Saxony, Prussia)

—

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart born

1757

Domenico Scarlatti (b. 1685) dies

1758

Sir Robert Clive governor of Bengal

—

George Washington and John Forbes take Fort Duquesne, later renamed Pittsburgh

—

Ribbing machine for manufacture of hose invented by Jedediah Strutt

—

Liverpool - Leeds canal begun (finished 1761)

—

First English manual on guitar playing published

1759

Battle of Quιbec: British conquer Canada

—

Voltaire: Candide

—

Georg Friedrich Hδndel (b. 1685) dies

1760

Laurence Sterne published first two volumes of Tristram Shandy

—

Josiah Wedgwood founds pottery works at Etruria

1762

Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Du contrat social, ou principes du droit politique

—

Benjamin Franklin improves the harmonica, making it into a playable musical instrument

—

Diderot: Le neveu de Rameau

1763

Voltaire: Treatise on Tolerance

—

Louisiana becomes British

1764

Jean-Philippe Rameau (b. 1683) dies

1765

British colonies in N America start organised resistance against London in protest against Stamp Act and other taxes

—

Horace Walpole: The Castle of Otranto - the 1st Gothic novel?

1767

Rousseau: Dictionnaire de musique

—

Georg Philipp Telemann (b. 1681) dies. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach succeds him as Kapellmeister in Hamburg

1768

Royal Academy founded under Joshua Reynolds

1769

Arkwright’s Water Frame

—

James Watt invents steam engine (perfected 1775)

1770

James Cook discovers Botany Bay

—

Ludwig van Beethoven born

1771

Spain secedes Falklands to Britain

—

1st Encyclopedia Britannica

—

Sir Richard Arkwright (1732-1792) produces first spinning mill

1772

Judge William Murray (1705-1793) sets precedent by ruling that a slave is free on landing in England

1773

Herder: Von deutscher Art und Kunst: manifesto of Sturm und Drang

—

Boston Tea Party

—

The waltz starts to become fashionable in Vienna

Top of list

1775

American Revolution starts (ends 1783). Paul Revere’s victory at Lexington. Britain hires 29,000 German mercenaries

—

Justus Moser: Patriotische Phantasien - plea for one Germany

1776

US Declaration of Independence

—

Charles Burney (1726-1814) completes his musical journeys having published The Present State of Music in Germany, the Netherlands and the United Provinces (1773)

1777

R B Sheridan: The School for Scandal

—

Gainsborough paints The Watering Place

—

Cooperative workshop for tailors at Birmingham

1778

La Scala opened

1779

Crompton’s Spinning Machine

1780

Serfdom abolished in Bohemia and Hungary

—

700 000 slaves in USA. cf. 1690, 1820, 1850

—

Bolero said to be invented by Spanish dancer Sebastiano Carezo

1781

Warren Hastings deposes Rajah of Benares, plunders treasure of Nabob of Oudh

—

Franciscan monks settle at Los Angeles

—

Kant: Critique of Pure Reason

—

Serfdom abolished in Austrian dominions

1782

Spain conquers Florida

—

James Watt invents double-acting rotary steam engine

—

Bank of North America established in Philadelphia

—

Mozart: Die Entfόhrung aus dem Serail

—

Johann Christian (London) Bach (b. 1735) dies

1783

Britain recognises independence of US

—

Montgolfier brothers ascend in fire balloon

—

John Broadwood (1732-1812) patents piano pedals

1784

Scottish millwright Andrew Meikle (1719-1811) invents threshing machine

—

Serfdom abolished in Denmark

1785

Steam engine with rotary motion installed at cotton-spinning mill in Papplewick (Notts)

1786

Robert Burns: Poems chiefly in the Scottish dialect start Burns vogue

—

Mozart: Marriage of Figaro (Vienna)

1787

British settlement for freed slaves in Sierra Leone

—

Mozart: Don Giovani (Prague)

—

Christoph Willibald Gluck (b 1714) dies

1788

Bread riots in France

—

Mozart: Symphonies 39-41

—

Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach dies (d)

1789

George Washington 1st US president

—

1st steam-driven cotton mill in Manchester

—

French Revolution

1790

First steam-powered rolling mill built in England

—

Adam Smith, Scottish political economist (b 1723) dies (do the tories know this?)

—

Mozart: Cos<141> fan tutte (Vienna)

—

Guitar stringing & tuning fixed at E, A, D, G, B, E

1791

Wilberforce’s motion for abolition of slave trade carried through Parliament

—

The waltz becomes fashionable in England

—

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (b. 1756) dies soon after perf of Die Zauberflφte

1792

Denmark abolishes slave trade (1st to do so)

—

Mary Wollstonecraft: Vindication of the Rights of Women

—

Illuminating gas used for 1st time in Britain

—

C J Rouget de Lisle: La Marseillaise

1793

Compulsory school in France from 6 yrs

—

US law compels escaped slaves to return to their owners

1794

Commune de Paris abolished, Robespierre executed

—

First telegraph: Paris - Lille

—

Slavery abolished in French colonies. Ιcole Normale and Ιcole Polytechnique (world’s first technical college) open

—

Auld Lang Syne (Burns, 1781) published

1795

Haydn’s London Symphonies

—

Paris Conservatoire founded

1796

Over next 20 years (see 1815) Napolιon’s army roam more or less constantly through Europe from Portugal to Moscow and Damascus, from Prussia to Italy

1797

Wackenroder & Tieck: Outpourings of a Monk - romantic religious essays

—

England starts exporting iron

—

Lithogr mus printing - Germany

1798

French capture Malta, most of Italy and the Rhineland

—

Wordsworth and Coleridge: Lyrical Ballads

—

Irish rebellion surpressed

1799

Haydn: Creation

Top of list

1800

London pop. 1m (1900: 4.5m)

—

Population USA 5.3 mill (cf 1840): 80% Brit, 10% Afr, 10% other

—

The Wounded Hussar (Hewitt, US)

1801

Populations - Paris: 550,000 (2.8 mill 1931); New York 60,000 (7.4 mill 1931)

—

Bank of France founded

—

Haydn: The Seasons

1802

J N Forkel (1749-1818): The Life of J S Bach

—

(c 1802) E T A Hoffmann (1776-1822) writes for Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung (Leipzig), esp about Mozart & Beethoven. Classical and romantic approx same thing. Influential on Schumann and Wagner

1803

Louisiana Purchase

—

Robert Fulton propels a boat by steam power

—

Henry Shrapnel (1761-1842) invents shell

1804

Napolιon crowned Emperor

—

Trevithick’s steam locomotive

—

Immanuel Kant (b 1724) dies

—

Beethoven: Symphony NΊ3 (Eroica)

1805

Rockets are introduced as weapons in British army

—

Beethoven: Fidelio (Vienna)

1806

Napoleon’s Berlin Decree closes European ports to Bristish vessels

—

British cotton industry employs 90,000 factory workers and 184,000 handloom weavers

—

Population of Germany 27 mill (65 mill in 1930)

1807

Britain prohibits slave trade

—

Turner paints Sun Rising in a Mist

1808

USA prohibits importation of slaves from Africa

—

Thomas Moore’s Irish Melodies 1st ed

—

Beethoven: Symphonies NΊ 5 and 6

1809

Ecuador gains independence from Spain

—

Franz Josef Haydn (b. 1732) dies

—

Broadwood grand pianos

1810

Napolιon at zenith: has Italy, Austria, Spain, confiscates British goods in Europe (Decree of Fontainbleau), sells seized US ships, annexes Hannover, Bremen, Hamburg, Lauenburg, Lόbeck

—

Venezuela breaks away from Spain

—

Mme de Staλl: De l’Allemagne

—

Durham coal miners’ strike

—

US population 7.3 million

—

Breitkopf & Hδrtel Leipzig start publish

—

US industry production $2m ($2bn 1860)

1811

Prague Conservatoire opened

—

Luddites destroy machinery in N England

—

Krup starts production in Essen

1812

USA declares war on Britain

—

Duke of Wellington enters Madrid

—

Grimm’s Fairy Tales published

—

Lord Byron: Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage

—

Henry Bell runs steamship Comet (25 tons) on Clyde

—

French army retreat from Moscow (20,000 of 55,000 survive Russian campaign)

—

Charles Dickens (b)

1813

Jane Austen: Pride & Prejudice

—

Mexico proclaims independence

—

London Philharmonic Society founded

1814

Parts of Westminster illuminated by gas

—

George Stephenson runs 1st practical steam locomotive at Killingworth Colliery (Newcastle)

—

Schubert’s production of 700 Lieder begins (ends 1828)

—

T J Dibdin, prolific musician and dramatist (b. 1771) dies (UK)

1815

John Macadam makes roads of crushed stone

—

First steam warship: U.S.S. Fulton (38 tons)

—

Vienna Congress and Battle of Waterloo

—

Restauration of French Monarchy

1816

Postwar economic crisis in Britain causes mass emigration to US and Canada

—

Argentina independent of Spain

—

Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Kubla Khan published (written 1797)

—

The Elgin Marbles bought for The British Museum

—

Viscount Fitzwilliam (b. 1745) bequeaths Virginal Book to Cambridge University (see 1619)

—

Rossini: Barbiere di Seviglia (Rome)

1817

John Constable (1776-1837) paints Flatford Mill

—

Riots in Derbyshire against low wages

1818

Chile declares itself independent

—

Internal customs in Prussia abolished

—

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley: Frankenstein

1819

British East India Company settlement in Singapore

—

The Peterloo Massacre (Manchester)

—

USA purchase Florida from Spain; Alabama joins the Union

—

Simon Bolivar becomes President of independent Colombia

—

Maximum 12-hr day for juveniles in England

—

Beethoven goes deaf

1820

Sir Walter Scott: Ivanhoe

—

Pushkin: Ruslan & Ludmilla

—

1.5 mill slaves in USA (cf. 1690, 1780, 1850)

—

German immigration increase until 1850 in USA

—

(Georg Wilhelm) Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) doing lots of philosophy, e.g. Vorlesungen όber Δsthetik

1821

Venezuela definitively independent. Peru, Guatemala, Panama proclaimed independent

—

Constable paints The Hay Wain

—

Sir Charles Wheatstone (1802-1875) demonstrates sound reproduction

—

London Cooperative Society founded

—

Populations (mill): France 30.4; Britain 20.8; Italy 18; Austria 12; Germany 26; USA 9.6

—

Ch M von Weber (1786-1826): Der Freischόtz (Berlin)

—

Factory production of harmonicas by Buschmann (Germany)

1822

Brazil totally independent of Portugal

—

E T A Hoffmann, German romanticist (b. 1776) dies

—

Royal Academy of Music founded in London

—

1st accordion Buschmann (Germany)

1823

Monroe Doctrine (closes American continent to settlement by European powers)

—

Claude-Henri de Saint-Simon (d. 1825): Catιchisme des industriels

—

Charles Macintosh invents waterproof fabric

—

Henry Bishop writes Home Sweet Home

1824

National Gallery founded in London

—

Beethoven: Symphony NΊ9 (Vienna 1824, London 1825)

Top of list

1825

Pushkin: Boris Godunov; Esaias Tegnιr: Frithjofs Saga

—

Faraday isolates benzene

—

Stockton-Darlington railway (1st to carry passengers)

—

Rossini: Barber of Seville 1st perf USA

—

The Minstrel’s Return’d (USA)

—

Babcock cast iron piano frames (USA)

1826

James Fenimore Cooper: The Last of the Mohicans

—

Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy: Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream

—

1st railway tunnel, on Liverpool-Manchester line

1827

Ohm’s Law (electrical current potential and resistance)

—

Schubert: Die Winterreise (lyrics by Wilhelm Mόller)

—

Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770) dies

1828

Thomas Arnold (1795-1842) headmaster of Rugby

—

Working Men’s Party founded in New York

—

Maria Marten broadside sells 1 mill copies in GB

—

Adolf Bernhard Marx (1795-1866): άber Malerei und Tonkunst

—

Franz Schubert (b. 1797) dies

1829

Bach’s Matthew Passion revived by Mendelssohn at Berlin Singakademie, 100 yrs after 1st perf in Leipzig, Good Friday 1729

—

John Henry (US physicist) constructs an electromagnetic motor

—

George Stephenson’s (1781-1848) engine The Rocket

—

Rossini: William Tell (Paris Opera)

—

Daguerre’s Daguerreotypes

1830

Stendahl: Le rouge et le noir

—

France captures Algeria (cf 1962)

—

Mendelssohn: Songs Without Words’ and Hebrides

—

Stroboscopes (magic discs)

1831

Charles Darwin starts expedition

—

Cholera pandemic starts India 1826, spreads via Russia and Europe to Scotland in 1832

—

German emigration to US c 15,000 (in 1841 c. 43,000)

—

Population: GB 13.9 mill; US 12.8 mill

—

Bellini: La Sonnambula and Norma (Milan)

1832

Mass demonstrations at Hambach in favour of liberal and national cause

—

Goethe’s Faust part II published posthumously

—

Manufacture of friction matches well established in Europe

—

Blaina works brass band (Wales)

—

Hector Berlioz (1803-1869): Symphonie Fantastique (revised version)

1833

Abolition of slavery in British Empire

—

All German states join the Customs Union (Zollverein)

1834

Spanish Inquisition (begun C13) finally surpressed

—

Victor Hugo’s Hunchback of Notre Dame is a bestseller

—

Cyrus Hall invents reaping machine (USA)

—

Schubert & Weber 1st publ in USA

1835

Expression L’art pour l’art, coined by Fr philosopher Victor Cousin (1792-1867) in general use

—

Somnambula 1st perf USA

—

Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor (Naples)

1836

Texas wins independence from Mexico

—

The People’s Charter initiates 1st working-class mvt in GB; Chartism demands universal suffrage and vote by ballot

—

John Ericsson (1803-1889) patents screw propeller

—

Boers start The Great Trek away from Brit rule in Cape to found Natal, Transvaal, Orange Free State

—

Colt’s pistol (for praries!)

1837

Woodman Spare That Tree

1838

Queen Victoria crowned

—

Charles Dickens: Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby are bestsellers

—

1000-ton steamers start plying Atlantic GB-USA

—

Holman Hunt, Millais and D G Rossetti found Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood

—

Jenny Lind’s dιbut in Stockholm in Weber’s Freischόtz

—

Prussian army band reorganised

—

Morse’s telegraph patent. Covers also digital recording

1839

Kirkpatrick Macmillan invents bicycle

—

US inventor Charles Goodyear (1800-1860) invents vulcanisation, enabling commercial use of rubber

—

Cunard Line starts

1840

Nelson’s Column erected, commerating Trafalgar (1805)

—

Transport of criminals from England to Australia (Van Diemen’s Land / Botany Bay / New South Wales) ends

—

4500 km railway in USA, 2130 in GB

—

More than 50% of US immigrants until 1890 are from British Isles (cf 1800)

—

Nicolo Paganini (b. 1782) dies

—

Swabian Max Schneckenburger writes Wacht am Rhein

1841

British sovereignty proclaimed over Hong Kong

—

New Zealnd becomes British colony

—

Edgar Allen Poe’s Murders in the Rue Morgue, his 1st detective story published as serial

—

Populations in mill: GB 18.5; US 17; Ireland 8

1842

Riots and strikes in industrial N England

—

Orange Free State set up by Boers

—

Child labour in mines prohibited (GB)

—

Glinka: Russlan & Ludmilla (St Petersburg)

—

New York Philharmonic Society founded

—

The polka (Czech origin) becomes fashionable

1843

Tennyson: Morte d’Arthur

—

Virginia Minstrels under Dan Decatur Emmett (1815-1904) produce 1st minstrel show

—

M W Balfe: The Bohemian Girl (London, Drury Lane)

—

Wagner: Der fliegende Hollδnder (Dresden)

1844

1st public bath and wash houses opened in Liverpool

—

Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers founded (beginning of modern cooperative mvt)

1845

Texas and Florida join the USA

—

Friedrich Engels: The Condition of the Working Class in England

—

Magdeburg Gessner accordions

1846

Potato famine in Ireland

—

US defeats Mexicans at Paolo Alto, enter Santa Fι and annexe New Mexico territories. Spanish-Mexican War starts (end 1848)

—

Berlioz: Damnation de Faust

—

Electric arc lighting at the Opιra in Paris

—

Mendelssohn: Elijah (Birmingham)

—

Adolphe Sax patents saxophone (invented 1841)

1847

Factory Act (UK) - 10 hrs/day women and children

—

USA capture Mexico City

—

Siemens electrical firm founded

—

Froment invents electric motor

—

Christy Minstrels

—

Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901): Macbeth (Florence)

—

Felix Mendelssohn-Batholdy (b. 1809) dies

1848

Charlotte Brontλ: Jane Eyre; Emily Brontλ: Wuthering Heights

—

Serfdom abolished in Austria

—

First Californian gold rush

—

Communist Manifesto

—

Revolutions (1848-9) in Vienna, Prague, Berlin, Dresden, Paris. Wagner (in Dresden) has to flee to Zόrich

—

Second Republic in France

—

"Austrians Out Of Italy!" but Radetzky beats Victor Emanuel

—

Alldeutsch Reichstag

—

Johann Strauss, Snr. (1804-1849): Radetsky March

1849

Britain annexes the Punjab

—

Dickens: David Copperfield

—

Broadside about the execution of James Bloomfield Rush reportedly sold 2.5 million copies in the UK

—

Frιdιric Chopin (b. 1810) dies

Top of list

1850

California becomes US state

—

Cuba declares its independence

—

7 mill slaves and 0.3 mill slave owners in USA (cf. 1820)

—

Ferenc (Franz) Liszt: Mazeppa

—

Bachgesellschaft founded

—

Jenny Lind tours USA

—

Wagner: Lohengrin (Weimar)

—

Chappell starts music publishing (GB)

—

Francis Day & Hunter mus publish (GB)

1851

Isaac Singer invents the continuous stitch sewing machine

—

Populations in mill: China 430; Germany 34; France 33; GB 20.8; USA 23

—

Stephen Collins LivingstoneFoster (1826-1864) publishes Old Folks At Home. Sells 20 mill copies by end of 1855

—

SACEM starts (France)

—

Verdi: Rigoletto (Venice)

1852

David explores Zambesi (-1856)

—

Second Empire in France

—

Stroboscopes with photos

1853

Crimean War starts (ends 1856)

—

Verdi: Il trovatore (Rome) and La traviata (Venice)

—

Wagner completes text of Der Ring

—

Japanese still have no word for music - adopt ongaku

1855

London sewers modernised after outbreak of cholera. Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) introduces hygienic standards into military hospitals

1856

Gastave Flaubert: Madame Bovary

—

Wagner: Die Walkόre

—

Robert Schimann (b. 1810) dies

1857

Hallι Orchestra founded

—

The Indian Mutiny

—

Hohner mass produce harmonicas

—

Leon Scott develops phonoautograph (France)

1858

Jacques Offenbach (1819-1880): Orphιe aux enfers (Paris)

1859

Charles Darwin: On the Origin of the Species by Natural Selection

—

Dan Emmett: Dixie’s Land

—

Wagner: Tristan & Isolde

Top of list

1860

Since 1850 424,000 British and 914,000 Irish emigrants to USA

—

Industrial production. USA $2 bill ($2 mill 1810); GB $3 bill

—

45,000 km rail in USA (cf 1880, 1930)

—

Franz von Suppι: Das Pensionat, 1st Viennese operetta

1861

Charles Dickens: Great Expectations; George Eliot: Silas Marner

—

Krupp starts arms production at Essen

—

Populations (mill): Russia 76; USA 32; GB 23; Italy 25

—

Civil War starts (USA) (ends 1865)

—

Garibaldi’s troops win war of Italian Unification (Victor Emmanuele Rι D’Italia = VERDI)

1862

Victor Hugo: Les misιrables

—

Electric generators in production

—

Ludwig Kφchel’s catalogue of Mozart’s works

—

Czermak photographs vocal chords (Austria)

1863

French capture Mexico City and proclaim Archduke Maximilian of Austria emperor

1864

Massacre of Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians at Sand Creek (Colorado)

—

Syllabus Errorum issued by Pius IX, condemning liberalism, socialism and rationalism

—

Pasteur invents pasteurisation (for wine)

—

First Internationale founded by Karl Marx (London & New York)

1865

Lewis Carroll (C L Dodgson, 1832-1898): Alice in Wonderland

—

Nottingham pawnbroker William Booth (1829-1912) moves to London to organise the Christian Revival Association, renamed (1878) The Salvation Army

—

Civil War (USA) ends (started 1861). Lincoln assassinated. 13th ammendment abolishes slavery

—

Droit moral: composer as author in Fr law

1866

First transatlantic cable

—

Wars between Prussia, Austria and Italy. Prussia invades and/or annexes Saxony, Hannover, Hessen, Nassau, Frankfurt and Schleswig-Holstein. Venice joins Italy

—

Dostoiesvsky: Crime and Punishment

—

Alfred Nobel invents dynamite

—

Black Friday on London Stock Exchange

—

Offenbach: La vie parisienne

—

Bedrich Smetana (1824-1884): Prodanα Nevestα (=Bartered Bride)

1867

South African diamond field discovered

—

Neue Zollverein (Prussia and North German Confederation)

—

Johann Strauss, Jr: Blue Danube Waltz

—

Moussorgsky (1839-1881) finishes Night on a Bare Mountain

1868

Johannes Brahms (1833-1897): Ein deutsches Requiem

—

Wagner: Die Meistersinger von Nόrnberg

—

Edvard Grieg (1843-1907): Piano Concerto NΊ1 in A min, Op.16

—

Gioacchino Rossini (b. 1792) dies

1869

Suez Canal completed

—

Tolstoi completes War and Peace (started 1864)

—

Suez Canal

—

Modest Moussorgsky (1839-1881) completes Boris Godunov

—

Hector Berlioz (b. 1803) dies

—

Claribel (Charlotte Allington Barnard, b. 1830) dies

Top of list

1870

Franco-Prussian War started by France (see 1871)

—

Jules Verne: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

—

First Vatican Council promulgates dogma of papal infallibility

—

John D Rockefeller (1839-1937) founds Standard Oil Company

—

Hoecht start massproduction

—

Suffragettes organised (cf. 1928)

—

Bismarck’s Ems telegram

—

Charles Dickens (d)

—

Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet overture

1871

German unity after victory in Franco-Prussian war. Wilhelm I proclaimed German Emperor at Versailles, Paris capitulates, France cedes Alsace-Lorraine. Paris Commune lasts 2 moths

—

Stanley, having butchered hundreds of thousands of Africans on his way up the Congo, says Dr Livingstone, I presume at Ujiji and is later knighted by Queen Victoria. The British Empire later becomes a model of racial supremacy for Hitler in Mein Kampf

—

Simon Ingersoll invents pneumatic rock drill (US)

—

Charles Darwin: The Descent of Man

—

Berlin population 300,000 (1914 2 mill)

—

Verdi: Aοda (Cairo)

—

Pottier and Pierre Degeyter, two workers, compose L’Internationale

1872

Claude Monet doing impressionism

1874

Britain annexes Fiji

—

Moussorgsky’s Boris Godunov completed (begun 1868)

—

Johann Strauss, Jr: Die Fledermaus

1875

Bosnia, Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria fight to repel Turks (-1878)

—

Mark Twain: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

—

London’s main sewerage system completed

—

Size of European armies: Russia 3,360,000; Germany 2,800,000; France 412,000; BG 113,000

—

Georges Bizet (1838-1875): Carmen, dies

—

Smetana: Vltava / Mα Vlast

—

Gilbert & Sullivan: Trial by Jury

—

Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto NΊ1 (Boston)

1876

Alexander Graham Bell invents telephone

—

Internal combustion engine

—

Pianola first demonstrated at the Philadelphia Exhibition, USA

—

Thomas P Westendorf: I’ll Take You Home Kathleen

—

Bayreuth Festspielhaus opens with first complete performance of Wagner’s Ring des Niebelungen

1877

Queen Victoria proclaimed Empress of India

—

First public telephones (USA)

—

Edison invents phonograph. Cylinder wrapped in tin foil, operated by a hand crank

—

Charles Cros designs talking machine (France)

1878

Turks pushed back to Adrianople (Edirne). Berlin Treaty checks Russian advances

—

Karl Benz builds motorised tricycle

—

Electric street lighting introduced in London

—

Paris World Exhibition

—

Christian Revival Association (see 1865) renamed The Salvation Army

—

Edison invents light bulb

—

Booth starts Salvation Army

—

Edison takes out patent on phonograph

1879

Ibsen: A Doll’s House

—

Henrik Ibsen: Ett Dukkehjem (=A Doll’s House)

—

Albert Einstein (b)

—

Jules Levy, on cornet, made first-known musical recording (of Yankee Doodle)

—

Bell laboratories - magnetic tape (USA). Experiments for a short time

—

My maternal grandmother born (so is Joseph Stalin, cf. 1953)

Top of list

1880

France annexes Tahiti

—

Rodin: Le penseur

—

135,000 km rail in USA (1860 45,000)

—

Maxim invents machine gun (GB)

—

Alexander Porfiryovich Borodin (1833-1887) On the Steppes of Central Asia

—

Jacques Offenbach (b. 1819) dies. (His Pιrichole 1st performed same yr)

—

A G Bell sketches stereo (cf 1931, 1955)

1881

University College Liverpool founded

—

Populations (mill): London 3.3; New York 1.2; Berlin 1.1; Vienna 1.0; Tokyo 0.8; St Petersburg 0.6

—

UK Music Publishers’ Association founded

—

Bιla Bartσk born (d. 1945)

—

Modest Moussorgsky (b. 1839) dies

1882

British occupy Cairo

—

Robert Louis Stevenson: Treasure Island

—

Wagner: Parsifal

—

Italian music copyright organisation founded

—

Igor Stravinsky born

1883

Royal College of Music founded (London)

—

Metropolitan Opera House opened (New York)

—

Richard Wagner (b. 1813) dies

1884

Germans occupy South-West Africa

—

Mark Twain: Huckleberry Finn

—

J.L. Molloy’s Love’s Old Sweet Song

—

Sound put on to film by Bell (Photophone)

—

George Eastman’s 1st Kodak camera

—

Bedrich Smetana (b. 1824) dies

1885

The Congo becomes personal possession of Belgian King Leopold II

—

Germany annexes Tanganyika and Zanzibar

—

Karl Marx: Das Kapital, vol 2 (posth.)

—

Cιsar Franck (1822-1890) Symphonic Variations

—

George Eastman manufactures coated photographic paper

1886

Statue of Liberty dedicated

—

R L Stevenson: Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

—

Berne Convention (copyright)

—

Wax cylinder graphophone (USA). Chichester Bell and Charles Tainton

—

Ferenc (Franz) Liszt (b. 1811) dies

1887

Arthur Conan Doyle: A Study in Scarlet, 1st Sherlock Holmes story

—

American Music Publishers’ Association founded in USA

—

Rimsky-Korsakov: Capricio Espagnol

—

Verdi: Otello (Milan)

—

Edison and Swan combine to produce Ediswan electrical lamps

—

American Graphophone Company founded. Bridgeport, Connecticut

—

Alexander Porfiryovich Borodin (b. 1833) dies

1888

George Eastman perfects Kodak box camera

—

Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890): The Yellow Chair

—

Gilbert & Sullivan: Yeomen of the Guard

—

Emile Berliner’s flat zinc disc grammophone

—

1st recording by popular pianist. Josef Hoffman (aged 12) at Edison laboratories

—

Max Steiner born (d. 1971)

1889

Cecil Rhodes’ British South Africa Company granted royal charter

—

London Dock Strike

—

Edison’s Cinematograph

—

Jessie Walter Fewkes records Zuni and Passamaquoddy ‘Indians’ in USA

189+

US invade Central America

—

US occupy Puerto Rico, Hawaii &c

Top of list

1890

Sherman Act (Esso, Carnegie)

—

More than 50% of US immigrants Slavonic, Mediterranean (cf. 1800, 1840)

—

German anti-trust laws

—

Britain exchanges Heligoland with Germany from Zanzibar and Pemba

—

Ibsen: Hedda Gabler

—

First moving picture shows appear in New York

—

Edvard Grieg (1843-1907): Per Gynt

—

Borodin’s Prince Igor performed (posth.)

—

1st coin-in-the-slot photographs in use

1891

The Phongram starts monthly publication (New York)

—

Edison’s Kinetoscope

1892

Coca Cola stops markerting itself as a medicine and is advertised as a soft drink

—

Munch: The Scream

—

Charles K Harris’s After The Ball sells 1 mill units in a year. Earns $25,000 a week as sheet music

—

Daisy Bell (Bicycle made for 2) by Harry Dacre v pop as sung by Katie Lawrence

—

Music hall star Lottie Collins sings Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay (no authors credited on sheet music)

1893

Karl Benz and Henry Ford each build (independently) a 4-wheel car

—

Engelbert Humperdinck: Hδnsel und Gretel (Weimar)

—

Pyotr Ilich Tcahikovsky (b. 1840) dies

1894

US industry $10 mill; GB $4.3 mill

—

Dreyfus affair

—

Uganda made British protectorate

—

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957): Finlandia

—

Billboard 1st published

—

Emil Berliner’s grammophone in USA

—

1st gramm records in USA. Hard rubber plates

—

Dimitri Tiomkin born (d. 1979)

1895

Japan invades Korea, Manchuria, &c

—

Auguste and Louis Lumiθre invent a motion picture camera

—

Rφntgen discovers X-rays

—

Sigmund Freud: Studien όber Hysterie

—

Music Publishers’ Association of the United States founded

—

Kalevala (Sibelius)

—

1st complete ballet performance of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake (St Petersburg)

—

Richard Strauss: Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks (Cologne)

—

Lumiθre: 1Ί cinema film on screen (Paris)

1896

Kentucky Babe (music by Adam Geibel) is hit as sung by Isadore Rush

—

Richard Strauss (1864-1949): Also sprach Zarathustra

—

Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924): La Bohθme (Torino)

—

Marconi invents radio

—

Clockwork-driven grammophone invented

—

Bιla Vikαr records folk music in Hungary

1897

March and Schottische A Hot Time In The Old Town by Theo A Metz

—

Austrian music copyright organisation

—

Voltey pianola Aeolian Co USA

—

1Ί patent electr-mech sync film-record (F)

—

Eugeniya Lineva records polyphonic folk music in European Russia

—

Johannes Brahms (b. 1833) dies

—

Gustav Mahler becomes conductor of Vienna Opera

1898

Spanish-American War

—

Ιmile Zola: J’accuse (see Dreyfus case, 1894)

—

First coin-operated piano successfully marketed by the Wurlitzer Company of Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

—

Johann Strauss Jr (1825-1899): Wienerblut

—

Shellac used in mass prod of 78s (USA)

—

HMV & DGG start mass production

—

Valdemar Poulsen’s wire ‘tape’ recorder (DK)

—

Elridge Johnson patents long-horn amplifier. USA

1899

Boer War (ends 1900)

—

Deutsche Grammophon A.G. founded in Berlin. Later with sub-branches in Russia and Austria

—

Compagnie franηaise du gramophone founded. Paris, later subsidiary in Spain

—

The Aeriola (self-playing piano) marketed by William Tremaine’s Aeolian Organ Company, USA

—

Alfvιn: Symphony nΊ2 in D

—

Edward Elgar (1857-1934): Enigma Variations

—

1st record-pressing factory (Hannover, D). Gaisberg and Sanders

—

Johann Strauss, Jr. (b. 1825) dies

Top of list

1900

London population 4.5 mill (1800: 1 mill, 1960 8 mill)

—

Friedrich Nietzsche dies

—

Freud: The Interpretation of Dreams

—

Strindberg: The Dance of Death, To Damascus (1900); A Dream Play (1901)

—

Bloomingdale’s Gramophone Department (NYC). 1st record section in a department store

—

Harry von Tilzer: A Bird in a Gilded Cage

—

20 mill exx mus sold in UK: 40,000 new titles

—

Henry Russell (b. 1812) dies

—

Puccini: Tosca (Rome)

—

Carbon microphones for telephone

—

2 mill pianos in GB

—

Paris Exhibition Phono - Cinιma - Thιβtre

—

Poulsen patents magnetic recorder in USA

—

Arthur S Sullivan (b. 1842) dies

1901

Queen Victoria dies

—

Oil drilling begins in Persia

—

Victor Talking Machine Company founded (US). Johnson and Berliner

—

Enrico Caruso records in Milano. UK owned Gramophone Company

—

Ragtime becoming popular

—

First black artist to go on to have a successful career, Bert Williams, contracted to the Victor Talking Machine Company, USA

—

Giuseppe Verdi (b. 1813) dies

1902

USA acquires perpetual control over Panama Canal

—

Russian Imperial Opera avialable on record (Victor’s Red Seal label)

—

African ‘folk’ music first recorded?

—

Elgar composes first Pomp and Circumstance marches

—

Meester’s Biophon elec-mech (Germany)

—

Lιon Gaumont - le portrait parlant

1903

British complete conquest of Nigeria

—

Henry Ford with a capital of $100,000 founds the Ford Motor Company

—

Universities of Liverpool and Manchester founded

—

1,000,000 pirate music copies found in GB

—

GEMA founded

—

US film The Great Train Robbery: 12 mins, longest to date

—

Sweet Adeline

—

Caruso recording sells 1m copies. Vesti la giubba (=On with the motley) for Victor Records in USA

—

1st electromechanical recorder patented

—

1st ‘unbreakable’ discs produced. Shellac-covered cardboard

1904

1 million cylinder- and recorded disc players in USA

—

Wireless Telegraphy Act (UK). Puts radio under state control

—

Puccini: Madame Butterfly (Milan)

—

1st experim. with electro-chemical recording

—

Antonνn Dvorαk (b.) dies

1905

Norway separates from Sweden

—

First regular cinema established in Pittsburgh

—

Franz Lιhar: The Merry Widow (Vienna)

1906

US troops occupy Cuba

—

Populations (in mill): London 4.5; New York 4; Paris 2.7; Berlin 2; Tokyo 1.9; Vienna 1.3

—

Percy Grainger first to record English ‘folk’ singers on phonograph in Lincolnshire

—

Gabel’s Automatic Entertainer (Juke Box)

—

Victor Victrola cabinet gramophone. Cost $200 and had enclosed horn

1907

Slow motion effect invented by August Musger (film Skating)

—

First Ziegfeld Follies staged in New York

—

Lauste patents Photographic Phonograph

—

Busoni: Sketch for a new aesthetic of music (essay)

—

Edvard Hagerup Grieg (b. 1843) dies

1908

L H Bakeland (USA) invents Bakelite

—

L’Assassinat du Duc de Guise (mus: Saint-Saλns)

—

Automatic phonograph, using discs and coin-in-the-slot, introduced in USA

—

Bartσk: 1st string quartet

—

Double sided discs become the norm

—

Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov (b.) dies

1909

F T Marinetti produces 1st futurist manifesto

—

US copyright law extended to include music

—

27.5 million cylinders and discs produced in USA

—

Anton von Webern (1883-1945): Fόnf Sδtze fόr Streichquartett Op.5

—

Schφnberg: Erwartung op 17

Top of list

1910

First dance marathoin organised by Sid Graumann of Graumann’s Chinese Theatre, Hollywood

—

Laughing Song sells 1m copies. Written by black artist George Washington Johnson, recorded by English comedian Burt Shephard

—

The tango gains immense popularity in Europe & USA

1911

Irving Berlin: Alexander’s Ragtime Band

—

Scott Joplin (1868-1917): Treemonisha

—

Mahler: Lied von der Erde

—

R Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier

—

Stravinsky: Pιtrouchka

—

Gustav Mahler (b.) dies

1912

British coal strike, London dock strike, transport workers’ strike

—

Sinking of the Titanic

—

After the Ball (see 1892) reaches 10 mill sales. Sheet music lyrics translated into many languages

—

London has 400 cinemas. In USA c. 5 mill people visit cinemas daily

—

Schφnberg: Pierrot Lunaire op 21

—

Edison’s diamond disc phonograph in USA

—

Cylinder recordings virtually obsolete

1913

Henry Ford pioneers new assembly line techniques in car factory

—

Stravinsky: Rite of Spring

—

Eduardo Arolas: El Choclo recorded in Argentina

—

Dance craze sweeps USA (I & V Castle)

—

My father (d. 1988) born

1914

First World War starts

—

Almost 10.5 mill immigrants entered USA from southern and eastern Europe inperiod 1905-1914

—

US Marines invade Mexico

—

Performing Rights Society founded

—

ASCAP founded

—

My mother (d. 1989) born

1915

Einstein’s Theory of Relativity

—

Henry Ford develops a farm tractor

—

Carry Me Back To Old Virginny 1 mill rec sales. Written by black artist James A Bland, sung by Alma Gluck (soprano) with male chorus and orchestra. Is this the 1st million-seller by a female singer?

—

1st US full-length feature film: Birth of a Nation (D W Griffiths, Breil)

1916

Dada mvt founded in Zόrich

—

Ottorino Respighi (1879-1936): I pini di Roma

—

George O’Connor, a white Washington attorney, allegedly records first-known blues record

1917

USA joins First World War

—

October revolution

—

C G Jung Psychology of the Unconscious

—

Chaplin’s yearly salary $1 mill

—

Music Publishers’ Protective Association formed in USA

—

Bartσk: String Quartet NΊ2

—

1st jazz recordings in NYC. Indiana b/w The Dark Town Strutters Ball by the ODJB. Not the first ‘jazz’ record to be released

—

New Orleans’ Storyville closed down

1918

First World War ends. Military casualties: 8.5 mill killed, 21 mill wounded, 7.5 prisoners and missing. Forces mobilised 63 mill. Daily war expenditure (all belligerents) $164.5. US pays $179 mill in war pension to 646,000 pensioners. In 1919 Belgian war damage estimated at $7,600,000,000

—

Women over 30 get vote in Britain

—

US Post Office burns installments of James Joyce’s Ulysses publ in Little Review

—

Music Industries’ Chamber of Commerce formed in USA

—

Originial Dixieland Jazz Band: Tiger Rag

—

Kern: Rock-a Bye Baby

—

Tri-Ergon’s optical sound strip (Germany)

—

Claude Debussy (b.) dies

1919

Spartacist revolt, Berlin. Karl Liebknecht murdered

—

Hapsburg dynasty exiled from Austria

—

Rutherford demonstrates that the atom is not the final building block of the universe

—

Alcock & WHitten make first non-stop flight across the Atlantic (16½ hrs)

—

Picasso paints Pierrot et Harlequin

—

Hammersmith Palais opened in London

Top of list

1920

Government of Ireland Act (UK): N & S Ireland each to have own Parliament

—

Hitler announces his 25-point programme at the Hofbrδuhaus in Munich

—

Gandhi (1869-1948) emerges as India’s leader in its struggle for independence

—

Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti unjustly arrested and indicted for murder; both executed 1921

—

Prohibition starts in USA (ends 1933)

—

1st commercial radio broadcast. USA, Europe

—

First US anti-trust action involving music publishers

—

Columbia starts issuing blues recordings

—

Gustav Holst: The Planets Suite

—

1st electro-acoustic recording (London). Recording of Armistice Day burial service for Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey, by Guest and Merriman, using remote pickup with microphones and amplifiers devloped for military purposes during WW1

—

Ralph Peer starts recording black artists

—

Thermionic tubes (valves)

—

Marconi opens first publich broadcasting station at Writtle (UK)

—

Paul Whiteman tours Europe with his band

1921

Populations (in mill): USSR 136, US 107, Japan 78, Germany 60, GB 42.5

—

Women get vote at 21 in UK

—

US record sales reach $106 mill. US production of records exceeds 100 mill units

—

Berglund’s Filmfotofon (Sweden)

—

Moving coil microphones

—

Schφnberg announces principles of the 12-tone scale

1922

Mussolini and fascists march on Rome, sieze power and form fascist government

—

Irish Free State officially proclaimed

—

Max Weber: Methodology of the Social Sciences

—

James Joyce: Ulysses published in Paris

—

T S Eliot: The Waste Land

—

BBC formed

—

200 commercial radio stations USA

—

Columbia produce first ‘silent’ record surface in USA

—

Films: Dr Mabuse (Fritz Lang); Nosferatu (F W Murnau)

—

Alban Berg (1885-1935): Wozzeck (written 1914-1921) 1st performed (Berlin)

—

2 mill radio licenses in GB

—

1st combi radio-phonographs marketed in USA

—

3 mill radio sets in USA

1923

Germany declares policy of passive resistance; French army occupies Darmstadt, Karlsruhe, Mannheim to force war reparation

—

Okeh start separate ‘race’ catalogue in USA

—

Anti-ASCAP licensing hearings in USA because of case brought about by National Association of Broadcasters (ends 1926)

—

STIM (Swedish PRS) founded

—

Bessie Smith: Down Hearted Blues. Ώ1st million-selling recording by black woman?

—

Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue

—

Honegger: Pacific 231

—

US pop songs: Yes We Have No Bananas; Tea For Two; I Want To Be Happy

—

Armstrong invents FM radio (cf. 1935, 1948, 1953)

—

Bix Beiderbecke organises jazz band in Chicago

—

Joseph ‘King’ Oliver and ‘Jelly Roll’ Morton record New Orleans-style jazz

1924

J Edgar Hoover (1875-1972) appointed director of FBI

—

Relβche (Satie)

—

Ernφ Rapιe: Motion Picture Moods for Pianists and Organists

—

Films: The 10 Commandments (Cecil B De Mille); The Thief of Bagdad (Douglas Fairbanks); Entr’acte (Renι Clair, Erik Satie); Le ballet mιcanique (Fernand Lιger, Georges Antheil)

—

Western Electric patent electromagn rec.

—

Warner buy Vitaphone rights from Bell

—

Tri-Ergon contract Universal-Film-AG

1925

Cyprus becomes British colony

—

Norway annexes Spitsbergen

—

John Logie Baird, Scottish inventor, (1888-1946) transmits recognisable human features by television

—

Adorno & Horkheimer establish Frankfurt School

—

Walter Gropius moves Bauhaus from Dessau to Weimar

—

Franz Kafka (1883-1924): The Trial (posth.)

—

Hitler: Mein Kampf (vol. 1)

—

E Scott Fitzgerald: The Great Gatsby

—

Victor Talking Machine Company failed to pay dividends for first time since 1901 (USA)

—

Films: Battleship Potemkin (Eisenstein); The Gold Rush (Chaplin)

—

Edgar Varθse (1883-1965): Intιgrales for 11 wind instr & perc.

—

Show Me The Way To Go Home

—

Electromagnetic recording on to market in US. 1st record: two songs from University of Pennsylvania’s 37th annual production of the Mask and Wig Club (Philadelphia)

—

Warner/Western Electric Vitaphone contract

—

1st electronic recording using microphones

—

2 mill radio sets in UK

—

78 rpm record speed standardised

1926

BBC comes under state control: changes name from British Broadcasting Company to British Broadcasting Corporation

—

General Strike (GB)

—

I.C.I. founded

—

694 commercial radio stations in the USA

—

A A Milne: Winnie the Pooh

—

Twice as many US homes own phonograms as own radios

—

John Barrymore/Don Juan (music + 325 wrds)

—

Fritz Lang’s Metropolis released

—

Bye Bye Blackbird popular

—

RCA forms NBC

—

Melody Maker founded in UK

1927

Inter-Allied military control of Germany ends; ‘Black Friday’ in Germany: economic system collapses; Gottfried Feder publishes the N.S.D.A.P. (Nazi) programme

—

Herman Hesse: Steppenwolf

—

Selective phonogram machines, offering twenty selections, available in USA

—

FCC (Federal Radio Commission, USA) founded

—

Songwriters’ Protection Society revived in USA

—

The Jazz Singer. Al Jolson heard singing on one reel

—

Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex (Paris)

—

Bert Brecht, Kurt Weill: Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny (Baden-Baden)

—

Jerome Kern & Oscar Hammerstein II: Show Boat (New York)

—

Popular songs: Ol’ Man River (fr Showboat); My Blue Heaven; Blue Skies (fr The Jazz Singer)

—

Victor: 1st automatic record-changer (USA). Takes 12 10-inch or 12-inch records

—

1st attempts at over-dubbing by ‘montage’

—

Record sales 100m in USA (cf 1932)

—

Peer records J Rodgers & Carter Family

—

First DJ on BBC. BBC Music Department established

—

US record sales peak at 104 mill units

1928

Women’s suffrage in GB reduced from 30 to 21

—

Chiang Kai-shek elected President of China

—

D H Lawrence: Lady Chatterley’s Lover

—

First Mickey Mouse film (Disney)

—

First broadcast of UK carol service, from King’s College, Cambridge

—

Gershwin: An American in Paris

—

Bartσk: String Quartet NΊ4

—

Makin’ Whoopee popular

—

Ravel: Bolιro

—

Kurt Weill, Bert Brecht: Die Dreigroschenoper (Berlin)

—

Fox buy Triergon rights - Movietone, optical

—

$650 mill radio receiver sales USA

—

CBS founded. Overtakes RCA by 1934

—

Dobro company formed (Dopyrea Bros, USA). Dobros: acoustic guitars with metal resonators

—

Capacitor microphones (DC voltage)

—

Ondes Martenot

—

Fritz Pfleumer invents magnetic tape (D)

1929

The Wall Street Crash or Black Friday in New York (Oct 28). World economic crisis begins. US securities lose $26 billion in value

—

Trotsky expelled fr USSR

—

Record Company of America (RCA) merges with Victor

—

Sδg det med toner (Fred Winter, Sweden)

—

Edison finally stops producing cylinders

192s

Bell laboratories develop digitalised recrdg

193+

Record racks introduced in USA

Top of list

1930

390000 km rail in USA (cf 1860, 1880)

—

In the German elections, the Nazis gain 107 seats from the centre parties

—

Nazis disrupt perf. of Weill/Brecht Mahagonny in Frankfurt and enact ordinance against Negro Culture

—

Schφnberg: Begleitmusik Lichtspielszene

—

‘Hillbilly’ accounts for 25% of all US popular record sales in USA

—

Popular songs: Georgia On My Mind (Hoagy Carmichael); I Got Rhythm (Gershwin); Body & Soul (John Green)

—

Xavier Cougat records Peanut Vendor (El manisero)

—

10-inch 78 rpm becomes standard

—

Recording cartidges developed

1931

Hitler’s storm troopers (SA) start terorrising political opponents. Start of German inflation

—

German millionaire Hugenberg undertakes to support the 800,000-strong Nazi Party. Other capitalists follow suit

—

Empire State Building completed

—

Nazis order effacement of Bauhaus murals and remove Klee, Kandinsky etc. from Weimar museum. Brecht and Eisler flee Germany

—

Hanns Eisler: mus for Kuhle Vampe

—

Essex Music International (EMI) opens its Abbey Road recording studio in London -- largest recording facility in the world

—

RCA Victor fails to market successfully its vinyl plastic 33.3 rpm discs due to popularity of the 78 rpm alternative

—

Electrical & Musical Industries EMI formed. Merger of HMV and English Columbia records (which had swalled the Carl Lindstrφm chain in 1925 and Pathι Frθres in 1928), leaving only Deutsche Grammophon-Polydor and a few small ‘independents’ as rivals in Europe

—

BPI British Phonographic Industries Ltd. Formed to represent the UK record industry in early 1920s (date inexact)

—

Society of European Stage Authors and Composers formed, to handle music licensing in USA

—

127 sound films made (only 8 in 1929)

—

Minnie The Moocher (Cab Calloway) popular in USA

—

Blumlein 1Ί stereo record (GB cf1955 1880)

—

Rickenbacker A model frying pan el gts. Beauchamp, Barth and Rickenbacker introduce first lap steel electric guitars in USA

1932

3 million unemployed in UK

—

German presidential votes (mill): Hindenburg 18; Hitler 11; Communists 5

—

Franklin D Roosevelt (Dem) wins landslide election with ‘New Deal’ policies

—

BASF develop magnetic tape in Germany

—

Aldous Huxley: Brave New World

—

Max Steiner (1888-1971): Music for King Kong (George Cukor, RKO)

—

Johnny Weissmuller appears in his first Tarzan film

—

Brother Can You Spare A Dime ; I’m Getting Sentimental Over You (George Bassman); Night And Day (Cole Porter); April In Paris (Gershwin) popular in USA

—

Record sales $6 mill USA (cf 1927)

1933

Prohibitions ends in USA (started 1920)

—

Machtόbernahme, Reichstagsbrand, Hitler granted dictatorial powers. First concentration camps (mostly communists and socialists at start; by 1945 10 million prisoners are interned of which at least half are killed). All books by non-Nazi and Jewish authors are burned in Germany. c. 60,000 authors, actors, painters and musicians emigrate from Germany between 1933 & 1939

—

Sophisticated Lady (Ellington); Smoke Gets In Your Eyes (Kern); Stormy Weather (Howard Arlen); Easter Parade; Anything Goes (C Porter) and Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? all popular in USA

—

Plastic tape developed by BASF. Not marketed until 1950

—

Radio Luxemburg starts on long wave

1934

Rock-Ola, Seeburg and Wurlitzer introduce multiple-selection jukeboxes across the US, installing 275,000 in five years. Bing Crosby becomes the most popular juke box artist of the day

—

Muzak Company formed (USA)

—

Hindemith: Mathis der Mahler

—

Blue Moon (Rogers & Hart); Stars Fell On Alabama (Frank Perkins) popular in USA

—

Price war USA records

—

Film & sound as postmix (Riefenstahl)

—

Hammond organ and electric piano patented

—

Edward Elgar (b. 1857) dies

—

Korngold from Vienna to Hollywood

1935

Your Hit Parade, sponsored by Lucky Strike, first broadcast on NBC

—

Coal Face (Britten)

—

Films: Anna Karenina (Garbo); David Copperfield (David Selznick); The 39 Steps (Hitchcock)

—

Gershwin: Porgy & Bess

—

Beguin the Beguine and Just One of Those Things (Porter); I Got Plenty o’ Nuthin’ and It Ain’t Necessarily So (Gershwin) popular in USA

—

RCA refuse FM. Armstrong (cf 1923) tries to pedal wares elsewhere (cf 1948, 1953)

—

1st Gibson electro-acoustic guitar (USA)

—

70% of BBC time is music

—

NCB founded

—

Bob Durham C&W elgt rec w Vol-U-Tone amp

—

Magnetophone developed in Germany. Magnetic tape dictating machine

—

Hammond organ becomes popular in USA

—

Alban Berg (b. 1885) dies

—

Carlos Gardel (b.) dies

1936

Spanish Civil War begins (ends 1939)

—

Germany occupies the Rhineland

—

First BASF/AEG tape recording made of a live classical concert performance conducted by Sir Thomas Beecham

—

150,000 juke boxes in USA

—

Night Mail (Britten)

—

Modern Times (Chaplin)

—

Pennies from Heaven popular in USA

—

Juke boxes important again in USA

—

Ottorino Respighi (b.) dies

1937

Germany, Japan (warring in China) and Italy (having occupied Abyssinia) form Anti-Comintern pact to rid the world of communism (sound familiar?)

—

Films: Snow White & the 7 Dwarves (Disney); Life of Ιmile Zola (starring Paul Muni)

—

Carl Orff (living in Germany): Carmina Burana

—

Bei mir bist du Schφn; The Lady Is A Tramp (fr Pal Joey, Richard Rodgers); A Foggy Day in London Town; It’s Nice Work If You Can Get It; I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm (I Berlin) all popular in USA

—

29 of 43 records are (swing) band recordings (USA)

—

Charlie Christian uses electric guitar in jazz

—

George Gershwin (b. 1898) dies

1938

32,000 people die in US road accidents

—

Honegger: Jeanne d’Arc au bϋcher (Ondes M)

—

Alexander Nevsky (Eisenstein/Prokofiev)

—

Films: Le quai des brumes (Jean Gabin); Alexander Nevski (Eisenstein / Prokofiev); The Lady Vanishes (Hitchcock)

1939

2nd world war starts (1 Sept)

—

Sigmund Freud (b. 1856) dies

—

Broadcast Music Inc formed to rival ASCAP

—

One o’clock Jump (Basie)

—

The Sea Hawk (Curtiz, Flynn, Korngold); Gone With the Wind (Selznick / Max Steiner); The Wizard of Oz (starring Judy Garland)

—

Lili Marlene (sung by Lale Andersen) becomes popular with German soldiers

—

51 mill radio sets in USA

—

90% of UK homes have a radio set

—

Philip Tagg’s parents married on 15 August

Top of list

1940

Leon Trotsky (b. 1879) assissinated in Mexico

—

Of Mice and Men (Copland)

—

Stereophonic recording demonstrated in Carnegie Hall, New York

—

ASCAP ban material from airplay in US

—

Hemingway: For Whom the Bell Tolls

—

The Philadelphia Story (Cukor, Waxman)

—

Films: The Grapes of Wrath (John Ford); The Great Dictator (Chaplin; Fantasia (Disney)

—

You Are My Sunshine; How High The Moon; When You Wish Upon A Star; South Of The Border; Blueberry Hill all popular in USA

—

350,000 jukeboxes in USA. Or: 225,000 juke boxes, using 13 mill records a year

—

Central European composers moved to USA by 1940: Schφnberg, Stravinsky, Bartσk, Hindemith, Krenek, Milhaud, Martinu, Weill

1941

In December, Japanese attack Pearl Harbour. USA joins war

—

Capitol Record start servicing US radio DJs with free releases

—

1st electric blues broadcast in USA. Sonny Boy Williamson on the KFFN King Biscuit Show, Chicago

—

Citizen Kane (O. Welles, B. Herrmann)

—

Bewitched; Deep In The Heart Of Texas; Chattanooga Choo-Choo popular in USA

1942

27 month AFM ban on radio performance. American Federation of Musicians. From 1942-44

—

Hangmen Also Die (Eisler)

—

Irving Berlin’s White Christmas sung by Bing Crosby

—

Casablanca (Warner, Max Steiner)

—

White Cliffs Of Dover (Vera Lynn); Paper Doll; That Old Black Magic (Porter)

—

1st black musician in US radio band

1943

Over 600 ‘hillbilly’ stations in USA

—

Rodgers & Hammerstein: Oklahoma! (New York, 2,248 performances), incl Oh What A Beautiful Morning!

—

US Army/Navy’s Magnetic Wire Sound Recorder. Later adapted to use tape

—

Sergei Rachmaninov dies

1944

Ivan the Terrible 1 (Eisenstein/Prokofiev)

—

Double Indemnity (Wilder, Rσzsa)

—

Decca issue ffrr (sort of HiFi 78 rpm) recording. Based on war technology

—

Allies take Radio Luxembourg and its magnetophone

—

My year of birth

1945

United Nations formed

—

2nd world war ends

—

Landslide victory for Labour in UK. Clement Atlee, Welfare State (until 1951)

—

Atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima & Nagasaki

—

US record sales $109m, highest since 1921

—

George Orwell: Animal Farm

—

Herman Hesse: Das Glasperlenspiel

—

Spellbound (Hitchcock, Rσzsa)

—

The Lost Weekend (Wilder, Rσzsa)

—

Henry V (Walton)

—

Television sales boom until 1957 (USA)

—

Labour government under Clement Atlee until 1951

—

Bιla Bartσk (b.1881) dies

—

Anton von Webern (b. 1883) dies

1946

Philippines independent

—

US record sales double in 1 yr to $218 mill

—

RCA press their billionth record. J-P Sousa’s The Stars and Stripes Forever

—

Charlie Parker: Ornithology

—

Ivan the Terrible 2 (Eisenstein/Prokofiev)

—

Irving Berlin: Annie Get Your Gun (New York)

—

DGG use tape for recording

—

BBC restructure: Home, Light, 3rd programme

1947

India proclaimed independent and partitioned into India & Pakistan

—

Bell laboratoires scientists invent transistors

—

Melody Maker publishes 1st charts in UK. Based on sheet music sales

—

US record sales peak at 400m units

—

AFM royalty coll rules from 1944 outlawed. By Taft-Hartley Act (USA)

—

Dizzy Gillespie: Cubana be-Cubana bop

—

Duel In The Sun (Tiomkin)

—

Capitol use tape for recording

—

Fender start producing amplifiers (USA)

—

Bing Crosby records radio programs on tape. Transferred to 16-inch disc for transmission

—

More liberal radio station licensing in USA. Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

1948

Gandhi (b. 1869) assassinated

—

Marshall Plan: $17 bill for Europe (another $5.43 bill in 1949). The Berlin blockade and airlift

—

Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and Burma independent from UK

—

State of Israel established

—

Atlantic Records formed in USA

—

Hamlet (Walton)

—

R Strauss: Vier letzte Lieder

—

Columbia introduce 33.3 rpm LP microgroove. 12-inch unbreakable discs made from vinylite

—

172,000 TV sets in USA

—

Decline of national radio listeners USA

—

1st solid electric guitar (Fender, USA)

—

Les Paul records Lover layer on layer mono (cf Leiber & Stoller 1954)

—

ABC buys 24 Ampex tape machines. Also 2.5m feet of tape, all from US distributors, Bing Crosby Entertainments Inc.

—

Armstrong, unable to sell VHF/FM radio ideas, throws himself out of a NYC skyscraper (cf 1923, 1935, 1953)

—

Lazarsfeld & Merton’s Mass communication, popular taste and organized social action. Critical radio research on Hitler & Stalin that becomes guiding star for Madison Avenue. cf Top 40 format 1955

—

Franz Lιhar (b. 1870) dies

1949

Apartheid established in South Africa (ends 1994)

—

Chiang Kai-shek defeated: Peoples Republic of China proclaimed by Mao Tse-tung

—

After Berlin blockade (1948) and great postwar support for socialism, Bonn, with money from USA, declares West Germany a Federal Republic. Later that year, the DDR is formed

—

Netherlands transfer soverignty to Indonesia; France to Vietnam

—

State of Israel admitted to U.N.

—

Indonesia independent from Netherlands

—

The Third Man (Carol Reed, Anton Karas)

—

White Heat (Warner, Cagney, M. Steiner)

—

Rodgers and Hammerstein: South Pacific (New York)

—

Bali Hai, Some Enchanted Evening, I’m In Love With A Wonderful Guy (from South Pacific); (Ghost) Riders In The Sky; Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend and Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer

—

RCA introduce 45 rpm vinyl record in USA

—

Most record companies now use tape for recording

—

Billboard starts C&W chart

—

Film sound all magnetic technology

—

Receiving licenses compulsory in UK. Wireless and Telegraphy Act

—

Richard Strauss (b. 1864) dies

Top of list

1950

Korean War starts (ends 1953)

—

Anti-Communist witch hunt starts in USA under mentally instable senator Joseph R McCarthy, aided by FBI boss Hoover. US sends advisors to Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia

—

Populations (mill): London 8.3; New York 7.8; Tokyo 5.3; Moscow 4.1

—

Margaret Mead: Social Anthropology

—

EBU (European Broadcasting Union) formed

—

‘Hillbilly’ accounts for one third of all US popular music sales

—

Music! Music! Music! (Teresa Brewer); Good Night Irene; Mona Lisa

—

500,000 juke boxes in USA

—

Kurt Weill (b.1900) dies

1951

Gerald Barry and Hugh Casson: Festival of Britain on London’s South Bank; Basil Spence designs new Coventry Cathedral

—

Royal Festival Hall built

—

RIAA founded (Recording Industry Association of America)

—

A Streetcar Named Desire (A. North)

—

A Streetcar Named Desire (Brando, Leigh / Alex North)

—

Hello Young Lovers and Getting To Know You (fr Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The King and I); Kisses Sweeter Than Wine (Perry Como); Blue Tango (Leroy Anderson)

—

Conservatives win election under Macmillan

—

1st electric bass guitar (Fender, USA)

—

High-speed multiple tape copiers. Bought by RCA and Capitol (USA). Year inexact (early 1950s)

—

Reverse recording on to tape developed. Inexact date: early 1950s

—

Magnetic disc drives invented (early 1950s)

—

Arnold Schφnberg (b. 1874) dies

1952

Israel and Germany agree on restitution for damages done to Jews by Nazis

—

Anti-British riots in Egypt. King George VI dies: our teacher cries and we are all sent home. We also celebrated ‘Empire Day’ and counted up all the red bits (British) on the globe in our classroom. GB produces atomic bomb

—

14 Nov. 1st record chart in UK - Top Ten published by the New Musical Express

—

RCA/Victor sell first pre-recorded reel-to-reel stereo tapes for $12.95

—

New Musical Express starts. 1st UK record charts: Top 14 (14 November)

—

High Noon (Zinnemann, Tiomkin; Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly); Limelight (Chaplin)

—

John Cage: 4’33"

—

I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus; Jambalaya (Hank Williams)

—

1st Gibson Les Paul solid electric guitar

1953

Korean War ends (started 1950)

—

Joseph Stalin and my Gran (both born 1879) die

—

Commercial TV established in UK

—

US chain stores, supermarkets and major department stores start selling records, particularly children’s records and LPs

—

VHF FM broadcasting starts in USA. cf 1923, 1935

—

Julius Caesar (Wolf Mankiewicz / Brando / Rσzsa); Dial M for Murder (Hitchcock / Tiomkin)

—

Karlheinz Stockhausen: Electronic Study I

—

How Much Is That Doggie In The Window? (Patti Page); I Believe; Stranger In Paradise (Borodin); I Love Paris (Gershwin/Sinatra); Ebb Tide (Frank Chacksfield); Frankie Laine 14 weeks at UK nΊ 1: I Believe and Answer Me (David Whitfield)

—

Record Mirror founded in UK

—

1st black artist on ‘Grand Ol Opry’ show

—

Paul Hindemith publishes A Composer’s World

—

Sergei Prokofiev (b. 1891) dies

1954

French defeated by Vietnamese socialist army at Dien Bien Phu: colonial loss of N Vietnam

—

Senator J McCarthy in nationally televised hearing ‘proving’ communist infiltration in US army; McCarthy censured by US Senate

—

US Supreme Court rules that segregation by colour in public schools is a violation of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution

—

The Man With The Golden Arm (Sinatra / E. Bernstein); On The Waterfront (Brando / L. Bernstein)

—

J R R Tolkien: The Lord of the Rings; William Golding: Lord of the Flies; Dylan Thomas: Under Milk Wood (posth.)

—

Oh Mein Papa 9 weeks #1 UK (Eddie Calvert); Hernando’s Hideaway (Archie Bleyer); Mister Sandman (4 versions incl 1955: Chordettes, Dickie Valentine, Four Aces, Max Bygraves); Young At Heart, 3 Coins In A Fountain, Hey There, You With The Stars In Your Eyes (Sinatra). However: 25 June Ken Colyer Skiffle Group, incl Alexis Korner, record for Decca. 13 July Chris Barber Band record skiffle for Decca incl Rock Island Line. December: Shake Rattle and Roll (Bill Haley & his Comets) reaches UK nΊ4

—

Benjamin Britten: The Turn of the Screw (Venice)

—

Olsen’s RCA Mk II synthesizer

—

Fender twin reverb amplifier

—

George Eashe invents tape cartridges (USA)

—

45s overtake 78s sales in USA

—

Leiber & Stoller overdub on 2 mono machines? cf Les Paul 1948

—

Stereo recordings on reel-to-reel tape in US?

—

1st transistor radio available on US market

Top of list

1955

Most record companies use stereo (cf 1880, 1931, 1940)

—

Since 1942 I Berlin earned $1 mill on White Christmas

—

65% of US homes have a TV

—

Bill Haley: Rock Around The Clock UK #1 UK 3 weeks Nov 55, 2 weeks Jan 56. Meanwhile Slim Whitman 11 weeks UK #1 with Rose Marie. Also The Yellow Rose Of Texas, Love Is A Many Splendoured Thing and Sixteen Tons

—

RCA introduce ‘Electronic Music Synthesizer’

—

Top 100 singles, Top 15 albums charts. Billboard (USA)

—

RCA start price cutting on LPs in USA

—

Sales value of LPs overtakes singles in UK & USA?

—

Top 40 programming format introduced. 1st Storz chain of radio stations (New Orleans). cf Lazarsfeld & Merton 1948

—

Arthur Honegger (b.) dies

1956

Hungarian uprising

—

Suez Crisis (Nasser, Eden)

—

Marocco and Tunisia independent from France

—

BBC begins FM broadcasting

—

6 mill UK homes have a TV set

—

The 7th Seal (Bergman); Around the World in 80 Days

—

UK Musicians’ Union ban on foreign bands ends

—

Stockhausen: Zeitmasse

—

James Brown: Please, Please, Please

—

Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe: My Fair Lady (New York)

—

Ronnie Hilton No Other Love, Doris Day Que serα serα, Johnny Ray Just Walking In the Rain biggest UK hits

1957

‘The Six’ sign Rome Treaty: start of Common Market

—

Gold Coast becomes Ghana, independent of UK (Kwame Nkrumah)

—

Malaysia independent from UK

—

Jack Kerouac: On the Road

—

Bridge on the River Kwai (David Lean)

—

Muddy Waters plays electric guit on UK tour

—

Love Letters in the Sand and Young Love (Pat Boone). Diana (Paul Anka). Peggy Sue (Holly); Jailhouse Rock (Presley)

—

39 mill TV sets in USA

—

Jean Sibelius (b. 1865) dies

1958

Race riots in London and Nottingham

—

School desegregation opposed in Little Rock (Arkansas)

—

TV licences exceed value of radio licences in UK

—

45 sales overtake 78 sales in UK

—

Melody Maker publishes 1st UK album chart

—

Mass prod breakthrough for stereo (cf 1955)

—

World standard agreed for stereo records established

—

National Association of Record Dealers formed in USA

—

US Songwriters’ Protection Society becomes the American Guild of Authors and Composers

—

Formation of US Country Music Association

—

1st RIAA gold record awards in USA. For Perry Como’s Catch a Falling Star b/w Magic Moments

—

Domenico Modugno: Volare

—

78s for dance and ‘race’ music only

—

1st Shure Bros 4-track recorders in USA

—

Stereophonic discs introduced in USA

—

1st pirate radio broadcasts in UK

—

Ralph Vaughan Williams (b. 1873) dies

1959

Cuban revolution

—

Orfeu negro; La dolce vita (Fellini); Ben Hur (William Wyler / Charlton Heston / Miklσs Rσzsa)

—

Motown Records founded by Berry Gordy in Detroit

—

500,000 juke boxes in USA use 47 million records

—

Miles Davis: Milestones (So What?)

—

Walk, Don’t Run (Ventures); Tom Dooley (Kingston Trio); He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands (Laurie London); Mack The Knife (Weill / Bobby Darin)

—

Richard Rodgers: The Sound of Music

Top of list

1960

Seventeen ex-colonies in Africa become independent

—

John F Kennedy elected US president

—

USA send military ‘advisors’ to Vietnam

—

Nigeria independent of UK

—

20% of US domestic record sales are singles

—

Psycho (Hitchcock, B. Herrmann)

—

Last Year at Marienbad (Resnais); Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (Karel Reisz); Rocco and his Brothers (Visconti / Rota)

—

Bing Crosby sells 200 millionth record, his version of White Christmas (I Berlin) selling 20 million units since 1942

—

Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weeni Yellow Polka Dot Bikini (Brian Hyland); The Twist (Chubby Checker); Never on a Sunday (Manos Hadjidakis)

—

Transistor radios widely available

1961

Berlin wall

—

Bay of Pigs (USA tries to invade Cuba)

—

Populations (mill): World 3,100; China 660; India 435; USSR 209; USA 179; Japan 95; Pakistan 94; Brazil 66; W Germany 54; GB 53. World adult population 1.6 bill (44% illiterate)

—

J F Kennedy shot

—

6000 independent record companies in USA

—

Gilbert Bιcaud: Et maintenant

—

Moon River (Henry Mancini)

1962

Cuba Crisis: Khrushchev offers to withdraw Soviet bases if USA moves bases in Turkey; Kennedy refuses

—

Algeria independent of France after bitter war of liberation

—

The Maagnificent 7 (E. Bernstein)

—

Dr. No (Barry)

—

Lawrence of Arabia (David Lean / Maurice Jarre)

—

Marilyn Monroe (b. 1926) dies

—

Getz, C Byrd: Desafinado (Gilberto)

—

Beatles: Love Me Do

—

Blowin’ in the Wind (Peter, Paul & Mary)

—

Wurlitzer EP 200 into production

1963

Profumo scandal; De Gaulle rejects GB from Common Market

—

Racist police and white civilian attacks on civil rights demonstrators in Birmingham (Ala)

—

Kennedy assassinated (Nov) in Dallas

—

Andy Warhol & Co exhibit soup cans, comic strips, etc. at Guggenheim Museum in New York

—

Dr. Who starts on BBC TV (D. Darbyshire)

—

The Silence (Bergman); Tom Jones; The Birds (hitchcock / Herrmann); Dr Strangelove (Kubrick / Sellers)

—

Dutch-owned electronics firm Philips demonstrates its compact audio cassette tape

—

Beatles: She Loves You and 1st album. 1st album costs £400 to make in UK

—

Album The Freewhelin’ Bob Dylan

—

Stereo 8-track cartridge introduced

—

Paul Hindemith (b. 1895) dies

—

Ιdith Piaf (b.) dies

1964

Tonkin incident: a US destroyer allegedly attacked off N Vietnam; US accraft attack Vietnamese territory; escalation

—

Legrand: Parapluies de Cherbourg (Bιcaud)

—

Un pugno di dollari (Leone, Morricone)

—

Zorba the Greek (Theodorakis)

—

A Hard Day’s Night (Lester, Beatles)

—

The Watusi, Frug, Monkey, Funky Chicken and other Twist variants lure many to discothθques where go-go girls set the pace

—

La fabbrica illuminata (Nono)

—

Fiddler on the Roof (Jerry Bock at New York)

—

Hello Dolly! (L Armstrong); I Want To HOld Your Hand (Beatles)

—

Where Did Our Love Go? (Supremes)

—

Mellotron Mark I

—

Beatles at Shea Stadium - 50 watt Vox PA

—

Stereo FM broadcasting begins?

—

Multitrack recording begins?

—

Cole Porter (b.) dies

Top of list

1965

Martin Luther King (w Nobel Peace Prize 1964) leads procession of 4,000 civil rights marchers from Selma (fired on by KKK) to Montgomery (Ala)

—

Ian (One Man One Vote Doesn’t Mean Counting Sheep) Smith declares White-lead Rhodesia independent (UDI). Wilson’s labour govt imposes oil embargo

—

Dylan booed for going electric at Newport Jazz/Folk Festival

—

Help! (R Lester / Beatles); Dr Zhivago (David Lean / Maurice Jarre)

—

First network experiment in which two computers ‘talk’ to each other and the first time data packets are used to communicate between computers. This paves the way for the Arpanet in 1969, a physical network linking academics at 4 US universities. This in turn becomes the internet

—

Yardbirds: Heart Full of Soul (use of distorsion - fuzz)

—

Los Incas version of El condor pasa

—

Who: My Generation

—

Rolling Stones: Satisfaction

—

King of the Road (Roger Miller); Downtown (Petula Clark / Tony Hatch); A Hard Day’s Night (Beatles)

—

Philips musicassettes at Berlin Radio Show

—

Edgar Varθse (b.) dies

1966

The Green Berets (Staff Sgt Barry Sadler)

—

Mao Tse-tung: Quotations of Chairman Mao

—

Fahrenheit 451 (Truffaud, B. Herrmann)

—

US cars equipped with 8-track stereo cartridge players, developed by William (Learjet) Lear, Ampex and RCA/Victor

—

US Music Publishers’ Protection Association becomes the National Music Publishers’ Association

—

Beatles: Revolver

—

F Zappa & Mothers of Invention: Freak Out

—

Frank Zappa produces the first commercially successful double album of popular music - Freak Out by The Mothers of Invention

—

Moog’s voltage control synth into prod (GB)

—

Fender Rhodes piano into mass production

—

Jim Marshall’s "stacks" (50 watt PAs)

—

Tape cartridges launched in USA

—

P Tagg completes studies and moves to Sweden

1967

6-Day War: Israel occupies West Bank (incl Jerusalem), Sinaμο and Gaza strip

—

50,000 demonstrate in Washington against US war in Vietnam

—

African Americans riot in the ghettos of Cleveland, Newark and Detroit

—

The Graduate (Simon & Garfunkel)

—

Blow-Up (antonioni, / H Hancock); Bonnie & Clyde; In the Heat of the Night (S Poitier, K Hepburn, S Tracy)

—

Pirate radios outlawed

—

Small Faces: Itchycoo Park (use of phaser)

—

Beatles: Sergeant Pepper. Done on 4-track machine for £25000

—

Hendrix: Are You Experienced?

—

Respect (Aretha Franklin)

—

Marshall amps

—

WEM 1000 watt PA system

—

8-track recording becomes standard

1968

Student riots in Paris. De Gaulle given special powers

—

Robert Kennedy assasinated in Los Angeles

—

Soviet troops into Prague to oust (legally elected) Dubcek government

—

Newly elected US president R Nixon promises to end Vietnam War

—

US forces in Vietnam using napalm and Agent Orange - human and ecological disaster

—

Martin Luther King assassinated (5 April)

—

Jerry Goldsmith (b. 1929): mus for Planet of the Apes (Schaffner)

—

The Thomas Crown Affair (Jewison / S McQueen / M Legrand); Funny Girl (B Streisand); 2001 (Kubrick / R Strauss, Ligeti, J Strauss). Mickey Mouse 40 yrs old

—

Woodstock festival with 300,000 present

—

Walter Carlos: Switched On Bach

—

Congratulations (Cliff Richard); Hey Jude (Beatles); Mrs Robinson (Simon & Garfunkel)

—

I Say A Little Prayer For You (Bacharach / Aretha Franklin)

—

Quadrophony first developed

—

More LPs than singles produced in the UK

—

1st home video system produced

1969

British troups sent to Ulster

—

UK singles sales bottom out at 46.8m

—

Development begins in Holland on the compact disc (CD). See 1971, 1972, 1979, 1980

—

Easy Rider

—

Hair

—

Tommy (Who) 1st full-length rock opera

—

Led Zeppelin: Whole Lotta Love

—

Aquarius from Hair

—

16-track recording standard

—

Dolby noise reduction system adapted for pre-recorded tapes and cassettes

Top of list

1970

Unidad Popular elected to power in Chile under Allende

—

Bing Crosby sells 300 millionth disc

—

A Man Called Horse (Rosenmann)

—

White Christmas sells its 30 millionth

—

Commercial breakthrough for cassettes

—

1st attempts for quadrophony at home

—

Jimi Hendrix dies

1971

USA extends bombing to Laos & Cambodia. Heavy bombing of Hanoi

—

Lt W Calley found guilty of premeditated murder at Mylai (Song My), Vietnam

—

The Godfather (Rota)

—

A Clockwork Orange (Kubrick); Investigation of a Citizen (Elio Petri / Morricone)

—

Intel produces large-scale integrated circuits which feature in digital audio processors and the Philips compact disc (see 1969, 1972, 1980)

—

Popular Music in Higher Eductaion starts in Gothenburg (SΔMUS) and in Boston (Berklee)

—

Shaft (I. Hayes)

—

Igor Stravinsky (b.) dies

—

Max Steiner (b.) dies

1972

Bloody Sunday in Ulster

—

Watergate. Nixon’s landslide re-election

—

UK record sales value tops £100m

—

First CD prototype tested in Holland (see 1969, 1980)

—

US Copyright Act covers now sound recordings

—

Bowie: Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust

—

Deep Purple: Smoke on the Water (from Machinehead)

—

Jesus Christ Superstar (Time Rice / Andrew Lloyd-Webber)

—

24-track becoming standard (early 1970s)

1973

USA kicked out of Vietnam. c. 55,000 US deaths, 303,640 wounded. Vietnamese losses: 2 million deaths of which 1 million civilians

—

Fascist military coup in Chile (3 September)

—

American Graffiti

—

Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon

—

Genesis: Selling England by the Pound

—

‘Independent Local Radio’ starts in UK. LBC and Capital Radio in London

1974

The Sting (Paul Newman / Joplin: The Entertainer)

—

The Rockford Files (M. Post)

—

ABBA win Eurovision contest: Waterloo

—

Bitches Brew (Miles Davis)

—

Chorus pedals (e.g. Boss, MXR, Ibanez) on market

—

UK cartridge prod peaks at 7.9 mill units

—

Duke (Edward Kennedy) Ellington (b. 1974) dies

—

My daughter is born

Top of list

1975

Margaret Thatcher succedes Edward Heath as Tory leader

—

White Christmas has now sold 135m units

—

Japanese record market overtakes UK’s

—

Taxi Driver (Scorsese, B. Herrmann)

—

Bob Marley: No Woman No Cry

—

Kraftwerk: Autobahn

—

Promotional videos start

—

Bernard Herrmann (b. 1911) dies

1976

Military coup in Argentina

—

West German record market overtakes UK’s

—

RIAA: 1st platinum awards single/album (US)

—

1900 (Bertolucci, Morricone)

—

US Copyright Act covers published & unpublished sound

—

Polyphonic synthesizers first available

1977

Saturday Night Fever (J Travolta / Bee Gees)

—

Close Encounters (Spielberg, J. Williams)

—

Vinyl sales peak at 344 mill units in USA

—

Sex Pistols: God Save The Queen

—

Prophet 5 on market

—

Philips show CDs at Tokyo Audio Fair

—

3M’s 32-track digital recorder $15,000 (USA)

—

Musician’s Union organiser for rock artists. UK 1st time

1978

UK vinyl LP production peaks

—

Formation of International Federation of Popular Music Publishers

1979

Worldwide decline starts in vinyl sales

—

The Wall (Parker, Pink Floyd)

—

Ry Cooder: Bop till you Drop (digital recording)

—

Dimitri Tiomkin (b.) dies

Top of list

1980

Solidarnosc movement (Poland)

—

Soviet army into Afghanistan

—

EEC retail music business sales overtake US temporarily. i.e. countries either in or later to join EEC

—

Philips/Sony CD standard finalised after 11 years of development (see 1969), 1 year after production of second CD prototype

—

US juke box count down to 300,000

—

Digitally recorded albums available in USA

—

Peter Gabriel III

—

Police: Zenyatta Mondatta

—

commercial breakthrough for video

—

Simmons SDS V electronic drum kit

—

12-inch single introduced to UK

—

Tape cartridges obsolete in UK

—

Sony Walkman sells 5 mill units in 1st yr (USA)

—

Tascam 4-track portastudio $1,500 in USA

1981

Chariots of Fire (Vangelis)

—

MTV starts in USA with $20 mill capital

—

IASPM (International Association for the Study of Popular Music) formed

—

Journal Popular Music started by Cambridge University Press

1982

War over Falklands/Malvinas

—

Israel invade Lebanon

—

Grand Master Flash: The Message

—

MIDI sequencers available

—

Philips introduce CDs on to market

1983

Cassette sales peak at 78.2m units in Japan

—

World market bottoms out at $9.35m

—

Flashdance (Moroder)

—

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (Sakomoto)

—

Local Hero (Knopfler)

—

CDs launched in USA and UK. World’s then only pressing plant at Hannover (D)

1984

Worldwide cassette LP sales overtake vinyl LPs

—

Sony introduce the first portable CD player, the D-S

—

UK record sales top $500 mill

—

MTV (US) earning $1 mill a week

—

Miami Vice starts (Jan Hammer)

—

Michael Jackson: Thriller (cf 1992)

—

Madonna: Like A Virgin

Top of list

1985

Gorbachev party secretary (Soviet Union)

—

Paris Texas (Wim Wenders / Ry Cooder)

—

Sony and Philips produce standard for CD-ROM which uses same laser technology as audio CD

—

Dire Straits album "Brothers in Arms" helps boost popularity of the CD format

—

Steve Case funds America Online as Quantum Computer Services, an online service for owners of Commodore computers. Subsequently introduced for other computers, AOL’s stock is listed on the Nasdaq index in 1992

—

Sales value of UK singles peaks at £82.1 mill

—

Beatles disc & tape sales estim at 1 billion units

—

1st Home Taping Audio Bill defeated in USA

—

commercial breakthrough for CDs

—

Quantec introduce Room Simulator (c.)

—

Fostex reel-to-reel 8-track costs $1,600

—

Still only 2 CD pressing plants in operation

1986

Challenger disaster (NASA)

—

Olof Palme murdered (Stockholm, 28 Feb)

—

Chernobyl disaster (26 April)

—

Sales value of cassette LPs overtake vinyl LPs (UK)

—

US Immigration Reform and Control Act tightens up granting of temporary work permits to overseas artists who do not qualify as pre-eminent

—

Concert Promoters’ Association formed in UK

—

Samplers readily available on market. Casio model costs $100 in US

1987

White Christmas sales now over 170m units

—

Beverly Hills Cop (Eddy Murphy / Harold Faltermeyer)

1988

Personics Corp launches in-store custom taping system, attracting backers including Thorn-EMI. Despite being rolled out to retail stores, four years later it files for bankruptcy protection

—

Sony and Philips produce the standard for the recordable compact disc

—

More cassette LPs produced than vinyl in UK

—

CD LP sales value overtake vinyl LPs in UK

—

Sony buys CBS

—

Worldwide CD sales overtake vinyl LPs

—

EEC market overtakes US (retail sales value)

—

Sales value of UK record business tops £1bn

—

Cassette single introduced in UK

—

CD single introduced in UK

—

DAT recorders available (Casio and JVC)

—

8-track DAT recorder from Akai & Alesis

—

Institute of Popular Music established at Liverpool University

1989

Fall of Berlin wall

—

US cassette LP sales peak at 446.2m units

—

No vinyl single sales in Greece, Singapore

—

Sales value of UK albums tops £1bn

—

More CD than vinyl LPs produced in UK

—

Batman (Prince)

—

Recordable CDs available

Top of list

1990

Thatcher out after 16 years. Major PM

—

Germany reunited

—

Iraq invades Kuwait

—

No identifiable singles sales in 19 nations. No identifiable vinyl LP sales in 9 countries, no CD sales in 5 countries

—

Vinyl LPs obsolete in Japan

—

Enigma: Sadeness

1991

War in the Gulf

—

M Jackson: 15-yr contract w Sony for $890 mill

—

Philips market Digital Compact Cassette DCC

—

Sony market recordable mini-CD, the MD

—

Agreement on e.g. DAT standard formats in US

—

Southworth Jam Box. Have your own jam session

—

Kahler Human Clock (cloned drumming)

1992

Tories 4th term - 2 million officially unemployed

—

Digital Audio Tape (DAT) and players launched

—

America Online stock listed on Nasdaq index

—

Sony Corporation makes first ever trading loss of o86m

—

W.H Smith announce their intention of stopping selling vinyl LPs in UK

—

DCC marketted by Philips. BASF close US tape-manufacturing plant. MD marketed by Sony

—

Thorn-EMI buys Virgin Records for o560m

—

Sony begin selling MiniDiscs, Philips launches Digital Compact Cassette

—

M Jackson’s Thriller 40 mill units in 10 yrs

—

Madonna’s 7-year $700 mill contract. Signed between her Maverick Entertainment Group and Time-Warner

—

Bob Geldof’s company, Planet, wins o10m Channel 4 TV contract

—

Sales of Michael Jackson’s Thriller album reach 40m units after 10 years. World record sales estimated to be worth $28.7bn. Mike Oldfields Tubular Bells sells 16m over 20 years - still selling 100,000 a year

—

Madonna’s Maverick Entertainment Group signs a contract with Time-Warner

—

Madonna’s Maverick Entertainment Group signs a contract with Time-Warner estimated to be worth $700m over seven years

—

John Cage (b.) dies

1994

BBC announce plans for digital audio broadcasting

—

Viacom buy Paramount (including MTV) for almost $10bn

—

German inventor sues Sony over patent rights to Walkman

—

CD-Interactive launched in UK

—

Blockbuster and IBM unveil NewLeaf Entertainment, a joint venture developing a technology that will enable consumers to download and manufacture CDs and cassettes in store. The joint venture falls apart a year later due to lack of record label support

—

Matsushita announce first portable DCC player

—

100m walkmans sold worldwide to date (10% in UK), valued at o3bn

—

Pavarotti’s audio and video sales top 50m units

—

Philips makes 4,800 more workers redundant

—

MTV opens in Russia

—

Thorn-EMI sells defence business to Thomson-CSF of France. Thorn-EMI buys Intercord Tonggesellschaft for o53.2m

—

Cerberus Sound and Vision strike deal with Mechanical Copyright Protection Society to market music on the Internet

—

Three surviving Beatles refuse o2.5m for one concert appearance on the Isle of Wight

—

Video Hits One (VH-1) launched by MTV Network Europe as ‘adult MTV’

—

Ageing US ‘rock’ stars sue for millions of dollars in unpaid back-royalties

—

George Michael loses case against Sony for release from his contract, and pays o3m costs

—

Paul McCartney estimated to be worth o420m, Tom Jones o252m

—

Virgin open first national ‘rock’ radio station in UK

—

Factory Records closes in Manchester, UK

—

Philips announce plans to sack 15,000 more employees. Thorn-EMI lighting sold to Investcorp for o162m

—

Pink Floyd sell 2.2m tickets before tour begins

—

Sales of Thriller reach 48m

—

CDs outsell cassettes in UK

—

Sony Music lends o452m to Sony Pictures

—

W H Smith Our Price chain and Branson’s Megastrores plan joint venture. W H Smith sacks 600 managers

—

Gaylord Entertainments (including Grand Ol’ Opry) on the market for $3bn

—

Polygram buys Motown for $300m.

—

EMI pays o50 to manage Michael Jackson’s Northern Songs for five years

—

IBM opens CD-on-demand kiosk in Florida, USA

—

Grateful Dead concert in Ohio grossed over $1.242m

Top of list

1995

Thorn-EMI close Rumbelows UK high street chain with loss of 2,900 jobs. W H Smith announces 1,000 job losses. Thorn EMI sells o100m stake in SGS-Thomson of France.

—

Country 1035, first UK ‘country music’ radio station, opened in London

—

Michael Jackson sells Beatles’ song rights to Sony for o60m

1996

President Clinton threatens $3bn sanctions (and a possible trade war) over China’s alleged

—

Janet Jackson signs $80m contract with Virgin Records. REM sign o50m, five-year deal with Warner Brothers

—

EMI (worth o7.3bn) demerged from Thorn. W H Smiths make first loss in 204 years

—

Cliff Richard knighted by UK Tory government

—

George Martin knighted and Van Morrison awarded OBE by UK Tory government

1997

Blair’s "New Labour" government comes to power in the UK

—

Philips launch affordable CD-recorder

—

MP3.com founded by Michael Robertson

—

Elton John’s Candle in the wind becomes best-selling single of all time: 31.8 m copies. Pre-orders of 1.5m copies for Elton John’s Candle in the wind single in UK, 8m in USA

—

Be here now by Oasis sells between 800,000 and 1m copies in first four days

—

Andrew Lloyd Webber made a lord and Paul McCartney knighted by UK Tory government

—

Noel Gallagher’s annual income estimated at over £25m. Richard Branson estimated to be worth £1.7bn

—

Elvis Presley remains RCA’s best-selling artist, with annual earnings estimated at $40m

1998

"New Labour" government sets up the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in UK

—

California-based Diamond Multimedia launches its Rio digital download player, beating off a subsequent legal action by the Record Industry Association of America (RIAA)

—

Specifications for DVD-Audio agreed

—

Reginald Dwight (Elton John) knighted by UK Labour government

1999

US President Clinton survives impeachment; "oral sex" part of everyday vocabulary

—

The Word Trade Organisation meets in Seattle. Delegates are met with lively demonstrations against the unchallenged global power and unethical arrogance of international corporations whose interests are represented by the WTO

—

Kossovo crisis

—

"New Labour" set up "New Deal" for musicians

—

CA*net3 fibre optic network in Canada becomes the world’s fastest computer network, capable of transmitting all nine of Beethoven’s symphonies in 0.065 seconds

—

Source Digital Music Intiative (SDMI) - designed to protect music downloaded via the internet - finally established. Major record companies join the rush to commercially release tracks via the internet

Top of list

2000

AOL announces purchase of Time Warner in the biggest deal in business history. AOL Time Warner’s businesses will include: Warner Music Group, Warner Bros., CNN, Time Warner Cable, HBO, America Online, CompuServe, Netscape, AOL MovieFone, Winamp, Spinner

2000

AOL announces purchase of Time Warner in the biggest deal in business history. AOL Time Warner’s businesses will include: Warner Music Group, Warner Bros., CNN, Time Warner Cable, HBO, America Online, CompuServe, Netscape, AOL MovieFone, Winamp, Spinner


Top of list

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