- Howard Mayer Brown
(b Berlin, June 29, 1881; d New York, Feb 5, 1959). American musicologist of German birth. He attended the Französisches Gymnasium in his native city while at the same time taking lessons in piano, music theory and composition with Leo Schrattenholz. He then went to Berlin University and, though he also studied music history with Fleischer, Kretzschmar and Wolf, it was in the history of art that he took the doctorate (1904) with a dissertation on Verrocchio’s sculpture. He then pursued a career as an art historian, helping to edit the Monatshefte für kunstwissenschaftliche Literatur and working at the Kunstgewerbe Museum in Berlin. In 1909, however, he began to devote himself wholly to music. After military service in World War I, Sachs joined Hornbostel at the Berlin Phonogramm-Archiv and co-authored the seminal article ‘Systematik der Musikinstrumente’ (1914), which laid out a new basis for the systematic classification of Western and non-Western instruments. In ...