As a musician or music enthusiast, visiting musical instrument museums can be a thrilling experience. It’s an excellent opportunity to learn about the history of music, discover new instruments, and immerse yourself in the world of sound. The US is home to over 100 museums dedicated to music instruments and history. However, with so many options available, it can be challenging to decide which ones are worth visiting.
But with so many options, where should you start looking? Here are our three top picks that are worth the visit if you ever are in these cities:
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City is renowned worldwide for its extensive and diverse collections of art objects from different cultures and periods. In addition to this vast range of art pieces, the museum boasts over 5,000 musical instruments from all around the world. From ancient Egyptian harps to modern electric guitars, The Met’s collection covers many periods and cultures.
The Met is not just a world-renowned art museum but also an impressive collection of over 5,000 musical instruments worldwide. From ancient Egyptian harps to modern electric guitars, the Met’s collection covers many periods and cultures.
The National Music Museum, Vermillion, South Dakota
The National Music Museum in Vermillion, South Dakota boasts one of the largest collections of musical instruments globally. Home to over 15,000 instruments dating back centuries ago up until recent times, NMM has become a favorite among musicians worldwide. It includes early keyboard instruments to iconic rock and roll guitars such as Les Pauls and Fenders.
As mentioned, the NMM is home to over 15,000 instruments, making it one destination you must visit. The museum’s collection includes early keyboard instruments to iconic rock and roll guitars. The collections account for various musical instruments, from accordions to zithers. All of the musical instruments are available not only at the museum but also online in their eMuseum exhibition; visit it here: https://emuseum.nmmusd.org
The Museum of Making Music, Carlsbad, California
In contrast, The Museum of Making Music located in Carlsbad California is dedicated mostly to American-made instruments and their makers’ history. Thus, people who love American music will enjoy this museum more than others. Visitors will have a hands-on experience with historical devices such as guitars and drums that accompanied legendary bands of different eras like Gibson Guitars.
This museum is dedicated to the history of American-made instruments and the people who made them. The museum’s collection includes rare and historic instruments from some of the biggest names in music, such as Gibson, Fender, and Ludwig. The galleries are pleasant and walkable, with a lot of story information on their walls about music production, types of equipment, and the industry in general. You can even try some musical instruments yourself!
Aside from these top three picks for instrumental museums in America, there are other unique places you could explore if you are traveling around the country; just search online before you go!
Visiting any of these musical instrument museums is an excellent way to educate yourself on the rich history behind our beloved sound makers. It is also a perfect opportunity to discover new sounds and immerse yourself in its world. So, whenever you’re in any of these cities, be sure to add these museums to your bucket list!