History and Evolution

The first trumpets ever made can be dated back to approcimately 1500BC, though people have been using trumpet-like objects and blowing into them to create sound for even longer than that. Typically, they were used for military purposes. Instrument design improved over the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, which made these trumpets more suitable for creating music with more notes. However, these trumpets did not have valves and could only produce a small amount of notes, like C's and G's. They could be used for fanfares. Inventors added one valve to allow more notes to be played, a half step down from the C's and G's. They then later added a second and third valve later on, allowing for a myriad of notes to be played. This caused a small conflict that is still prominent today. Having three valves on a trumpet means that some notes come out sharper than others, which requires a tuning slide to adjust these notes. Changing the key meant that you had to change different pipes on the horn. By the 1800's, instrument improvements such as keys and valves led to its chromatic use, meaning that the instrument could play notes up by half-steps. The trumpet's legacy has carried on throughout history, and today it can be heard in all kinds of styles, from jazz to classical.