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Three days before Brahms was born on 7 May 1833 in Hamburg, the first weekly illustrated magazine, the Pfennig-Magazin was published. Following on from the success of the Penny Magazine, which had appeared in England since 1832, the Pfennig-Magazin also aimed to reach a broad public. A few months later, the Hamburg music publisher Julius Schubert announced a new music periodical, a Pfennig-Magazin für Pianofortespieler, which offered ‘selected piano compositions for beginners, experienced players and virtuosos’.
Brahms was born at a time in which the market for printed matter, and especially music, was burgeoning as a result of newer, cheaper printing methods and the growing demand from music-making (especially piano-playing) amateurs [see Ch. 14 ‘Private Music-Making’]. Arrangements were very profitable, but since resulting copyright issues were still unresolved, this led to many copyright disputes between publishers from the 1830s onwards [see Ch. 11 ‘As Arranger’].
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