Joseph Milford Nicholson (b. 1935) : pioneer trombone historian

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Andrew David Judd (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Randy Kohlenberg

Abstract: Interest in the history and development of the trombone and its literature escalated during the last half of the twentieth century. As curricula for doctoral degrees began to develop during the 1950s, trombonists in advanced degree programs began to recognize lapses in the history of the instrument. One of the earliest doctoral documents that focused upon creating a more comprehensive single source of trombone heritage was entitled, "A Historical Background of the Trombone and Its Music" (1967), by Joseph Milford Nicholson (b. 1935). Joseph Nicholson was born in Penoke, Kansas, on August 15, 1935. Raised in a musical family, he learned to play the trombone in the public school bands of his hometown, Fruita, Colorado. Later, Nicholson enrolled at Southwestern Bible Institute (1952-1955) and graduated from Texas Wesleyan College (B.Mus 1957). He earned the MME (1961) from North Texas State University and the D.M.A. (1967) from the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri at Kansas City (UMKC). Nicholson taught at Southwestern beginning in 1956, but left in 1960 to teach at Evangel College, Springfield, MO, where he taught until 1991. During his years at Evangel, Nicholson was chair of the Fine Arts Department (1967-1981), the principal trombonist in the Springfield (MO) Symphony (1966-1977), and an active member of the Springfield Brass Quintet (1966-1977). Nicholson pursued his interest in trombone history and literature while studying at UMKC. Because his text summarized into one document the current knowledge of the time about the history and literature of the trombone, Nicholson's work was one of the earliest to appear outside the context of the music dictionaries. Through his writing, teaching, and presentations, Nicholson is thought to have spurred interest among the next generation of trombonists who began to develop a more comprehensive chronicle of the trombone. Nicholson's legacy continues through his influence upon trombonists and the citations in later, more era-specific histories of the instrument."--Abstract from author supplied metadata.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2007
Trombone, literature, history
Nicholson, Joseph Milford,--1935-

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