Levitin ex music industry mogul cum psychoacoustician
1) Tanning. This made possible the preparation of skins for
stretching over things to make early drums.
2) The drill/carving knife. This made possible the boring of holes
in wood and bone.
3) Notation (and as you suggested, Perry, the printing press).
Together, these emancipated music from small, insulated communities
of people, and allowed for music to be learned by people who had
never heard a piece before -- this is the beginning of music going
4) The concert hall. The first concert hall didn't arise until the
1600s. The Greeks had performance arenas for sporting and theater
events, but in western society, concert halls didn't appear until the
17th century. This created two classes of people: musicians and
listeners. The idea of a musical expert or performer was introduced
consequent to this.
5) Tuning gears/pegs. This made possible the development of stringed
instruments. (You had actually traced this back to Archimedes.)
6) Marconi - wireless transmission. This allowed people in one part
of the world to hear music from another part of the world, or to hear
music without having to leave their homes! This must have had an
enormous impact on the sheer amount of an variety of music and
individual could be exposed to.
7) Transistor. This made music portable. We take for granted that
people can now hear music at the beach, in their cars, wherever they
8) Piano. Great harmony engine.
9) Tape/vinyl. It remains to be seen if this will have a big impact
historically. but it sure had a big impact on my own life. This
made it possible to preserve performances that can be played back
anywhere, anytime, for a virtually unlimited number of times.
10) MTV. This changed our criteria for what constitutes "good music"
from being based purely on the song to being based purely on the sex