Before Music

Where Instruments Come From


From award-winning author Annette Bay Pimentel comes an oversize nonfiction picture book exploring how music and musical instruments are made-across time and around the world


ISBN: 9781419745553 Category:

Annette Bay Pimentel


Music doesn’t come out of nothing.
It always starts somewhere . . .
with something . . .
with someone.

Discover how music is made in this survey of musical instruments from around the world. Organized by material-from wood to gourds to found objects and more-Before Music marries a lyrical core text with tons of informational material for curious readers.

In the narrative text, readers will encounter makers as they source their materials and craft instruments by hand, drawing the line from the natural world to the finished product and its sound. The sidebars offer much more to discover, including extensive instrument lists, short bios of musical innovators, and more.

Additional information

Weight 950 g
Dimensions 26 x 37.4 cm
Publisher name ABRAMS
Publication date 23 June 2022
Number of pages 88
Format Hardback
Contributors Illustrated by Madison Safer
Dimensions 26 x 37.4 cm
Weight 950 g


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Annette Bay Pimentel is the author of several nonfiction picture books, including All the Way to the Top, which received a Schneider Family Book Award honor; Girl Running, which was a Junior Library Guild pick and received a starred review; and Pura’s Cuentos. She lives in Moscow, Idaho.

Madison Safer (she/her) is a queer illustrator whose work is inspired by Russian folk art, Jewish paper cuttings, quilt patterns, and the quiet woods of New England. She received her bachelor of fine arts in illustration studies from Montserrat College of Art. Before Music is her debut picture book.