Piano Page

Websites: Cantos Piano HistoryConcert Pitch PianoFender Rhodes SupersiteHistory of Piano MusicIshii's Jazz PianoJazz Piano OnlinePianoMartPiano MuseumPiano Technician's GuildUK PianoVirtual Piano Museum

Variations: Player Piano ◊ Electric Piano ◊ Rhodes Piano ◊ Pianet ◊ Clavinet ◊ Celesta ◊ Cembalet

Wikipedia: Piano is a common abbreviation for pianoforte, a musical instrument with a keyboard (see keyboard instrument). Its sound is produced by strings stretched on a rigid frame. These vibrate when struck by felt-covered hammers, which are activated by the keyboard. The word pianoforte is from the Italian for soft-loud, referring to the ability of the piano to play notes at many volumes.
As a keyboard stringed instrument, the piano is similar to the clavichord and harpsichord. The three instruments differ in the mechanism of sound production. In a harpsichord, strings are plucked by quills or similar material. In the clavichord, strings are struck by tangents which remain in contact with the string. In a piano, the strings are struck by hammers which immediately rebound, leaving the string to vibrate freely.

"The Rhodes electric piano could arguably be the most important instrument to come along in the 20th century. Before the synthesizer was actually available and became an active member of the music world, the Rhodes had become a standard in jazz, pop, rock and R&B." -- George Duke

"On live gigs, when there was a Steinway grand piano available, Chick Corea would try to sneak it in somewhere, but Miles would stop him saying, 'The piano is over. It's an old-fashioned instrument. I don't want to hear it any more. It belongs to Beethoven. It's not a contemporary instrument." -- Ian Carr, author of Miles Davis