The History and Evolution of Music Playing Machines is one of the largest spaces for music reviews in America. Recent reports show that in a week, an average person spends about 18 hours listening to music. We all have a variety of music choices and why we listen to music. However, what many do not know is the history and the evolution of music-playing machines.

According to online reviews, music playing machines have been in existence since the 19th century. With the first repute instrument invented by Thomas Edison in 1877, the phonograph was regarded by many. It led to the urgent consciousness of the need for record and music playing machines.

The earliest music playing device was capable of record and music playback. The sounds produced transpired into more creative ways of sound recording. In the 1800s, other music machines were developed by different inventors. They improved the invention of Thomas Edison and produced machines like:


By Alexander Graham Bell. While he and his team had no intention to create music recording equipment, it was more useful than a mere phone conversation recorder.


Emile Berliner used a flat disc created out of vinyl to produce a gadget that records and produces sound with a 78 revolutions speed per minute. Later, music boxes emerged.

Music Boxes:

With different inventors, it produces delicate sound as a music disc moves around the pins. However, while they declined at the start of the 20th century, other devices emerged.

Music Devices of the 20th Century

Radios: Before the 1920s, they were used for naval and military communications. However, it was later adopted for broadcast programs and by the start of World War II, it was being used to listen to music by people.

Accordeo Boys:

This was a creative entertainment tool with an accordion in hand, accompanied by a large drum at the foot. The instruments can still be found in museums today.

Player Pianos:

These are pianos created to reproduce live performances although musicians could also play by hand. They record and play music, producing music with unique sounds.

Steam Calliopes:

As steam-powered organs, they could attract passersby with their loud noises. Some of them today are built into vehicles to enhance mobility.

Many other musical devices including dance organs were popular across Europe. They were used for different Dance Hall orchestras. There were also automatic pipe organs, jukeboxes, transistor radios, Walkman, boomboxes, CD Players, and today, MP3 players.

However, MP3 players were soon integrated into smart techs like phones, iPods, laptops, and computers. Starting from the 2000s, the 21st century witnessed the commercialization of music playing machines.

Today, you don’t need a radio or a phonograph to enjoy music. All thanks to technology, there are wireless listening devices powered by Bluetooth. There are also headphones or earbuds with great sounds used as music playing devices. The world has experienced a reputable shift from the beginning of time.

Thus, with streaming apps and websites like Spotify, Apple Music, iHeartradio, SoundCloud, etc. music can be enjoyed without walking into a bar or a dance hall.