This Old-School Invention Will Blow Your Mind!

Source: Wikimedia

Can you recall the time when the atmosphere was accompanied by the sound of vinyl record on the turntable, and the flipping of pages of the song sheet? The living room furnished with comfortable sofas and chairs where the family would arrange to enjoy music would be filled with tunes as the family gathered around the piano. This was the period when music was not only listened to but felt, composed and valued. This leads us to what can be considered as a unique piece of technology from that time – a mechanical musical notation typewriter.

Picture this: a typewriter, but instead of the letters and numbers, the key is marked with musical notes, sharps, flats, and other symbols. Thus, this interesting and revolutionary invention – mechanical musical notation typewriter – gave composers and arrangers an opportunity to type out music notes with great accuracy. It was a tool that combined the aspect of typing which is very precise with the aspect of composing music.

Source: Reddit

Known to have been developed in the early 1900’s, this typewriter proved to be a very useful tool for musicians and music publishers. Music notation software has only been developed recently and writing music was a quite tedious task. Every note had to be handwritten, which made it rather uncontrolled and prone to mistakes and inconsistencies. Musical typewriter improved this process to the extent that musicians are now able to produce neat and presentable scores in a comparatively short time.

These typewriters were first introduced in the 1920’s and 1930’s which was the cultural revolution period. Jazz was grooving and classical pieces were developing. Music was also a very much a part of the homes of the people since it could be a family member practicing the piano or several friends singing in the parlor. The musical notation typewriter was an important element in this musical culture even though it did not produced sound.

Music teachers were also more able to create lesson plans and as for the publishers, they were able to produce more sheet music to accommodate for the increasing numbers. This therefore led to the easy access of music to the general public. Anyone of any age could engage and have fun with music by either playing an instrument, singing, or reading music sheets of the songs they love.

Source: Noviscore

picture this: you are in a small room and you are comfortable, the light is low and it is reflecting off of newly typed sheet music. The keys of the musical typewriter tap-tap-tapping in perfect tempo, the sound of which is almost melodic as the notes are being typed out. Every stroke gives birth to a composition that is then able to be played and listened to. This is because the typewriter, with its elements of utility and creativity, is a symbol of a time when music was a major component of people’s lives.

It is rather challenging to come across a mechanical musical notation typewriter in the present day world. It is a very real link to the past and an object that conveys the narrative of how music was produced and distributed. It is a vivid example of how people were able to create something new and unique, and how music has always been with us.

Source: Noviscore

Remembering the old days, let’s not forget the gadgets that contributed to the tunes of our generation. The mechanical musical notation typewriter is not just one of the materials; it is an emblem of a period when music was an inherent part of life and people’s lives, giving hope, warmth, and unity.