Founded in Philadelphia in 1876, J.W. Pepper has a long history connected to its seminal role in the proliferation of music to bands, churches, choirs, orchestras, and school ensembles across the United States. Its publication of sheet music extends from the day of the town band, through the birth of jazz and rock, to the present.
Around the turn of the century, the company spurred the development of town bands at a time when they were a popular part of the social scene and the cultural life of a community. J.W. Pepper supported this by manufacturing instruments and publishing and selling sheet music. The company even had a regular publication titled The Town Band containing a code of ethics and recommendations for organizing town bands.
Chief Operating Officer Lee Paynter says over the last 30 years, J.W. Pepper has transformed from a regional East Coast company with a national business, to a truly national company. Along with a large online presence it has 11 retail outlets and two distribution centers across the country.
In October 2013, the Philadelphia area sheet-music retailer moved its corporate headquarters from Paoli to Exton, PA.