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Maurice Taylor, 95; His 'Easy Steps' Books Taught Music

November 19, 2001|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Maurice D. Taylor, 95, author of books designed to teach high school students how to play musical instruments, died Wednesday in Montrose, Pa., of natural causes.

Taylor produced a series of books titled "Easy Steps to the Band" to help young people master particular musical instruments and participate in a high school band. The books were popular with teachers and community leaders, as well as parents, in the early and mid-20th century, when school districts wanted to create bands to instill group spirit as well as to provide a creative outlet.

Taylor was a music teacher, instructing students at Montrose High School from 1927 to 1955 and again from 1967 to 1972.

In the late 1930s, Taylor established Montrose Music House, where he published his "Easy Steps" series. After publishing 158 titles, he sold the business to Mills Music Inc. in New York in 1945.

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