The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (2023)

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Besides drums and stringswind instrumentsare one of the most common groups ofmusical instruments– and probably the world's top jazz stars.

In this article we are going to take a look at some of the most well knowntypeswind instruments, including examples of wind instruments,messEcanaThe family.

wind instrumentsUse a mouthpiece to create a vibrating flow of air that is amplified by thethe instrument sends tThe earliest examples are believed to come from animal horns used as warning bells in past civilizations.

There are now hundreds of variations, the most common being woodwindmesswinds.

The difference between woodwind andmessinstrumentsIt's relatively self-explanatory:

  • Holzblasinstrumente(or 'canainstruments') are more likely to be wood or have areed mouthpiece
  • messinstrumentsare made ofMetaland characteristica metal mouthpiece

If you are considering choosing any of these tools, we recommend that you first gain a basic understanding of the differenttypeswind instrumentsaccessible.

In this article, we will look at 12 different options from whichclarinetto the bagpipes - and I recommend some great jazz recordings to listen to!


ORecorderit's a simple lookingwind instrumentsInstrumentwhich originated in Europe and came to prominence in early classical music, particularly during the Baroque period. It first appeared in the 14th century before regularly disappearing in the mid-18th century.

recently theInstrumentis most commonly associated with early childhood education, with many children picking up a plastic version of theInstrumentin elementary school music classes.

Due to its involvement in music pedagogy, it is one of the most widespreadtypeswind instrumentsbut few musicians take itInstrumentbeyond elementary education.

Check out the Israeli musician based in New YorkTali Rubinsteinfor a killer jazz recorder game!

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (1)


this germanwind instrumentsInstrumentwas founded in 1700 and remains one of the best knowntypeswind instruments.

The mouthpiece features a singlecanaand has a cylindrical tubular shape. It resembles one in many waysOboe, although it is a little easier to play, which makes it a great choice for beginners.

Since its beginnings, at the end of the 18th century, theclarinetwent through numerous changes until the 19th century. Since then, its structure has remained relatively constant.

In addition to standard BInstrument, there are several other variations such asthe E-flat clarinet, which is almost half the size of a normal oneclarinetit's atLowclarinetplaying in the lower registers.

Clarinets are often used in orchestras and brass bands, as well as in jazz ensembles.

Sydney Bechet, Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw are just a few of the famous jazz musicians who have played at JazzInstrumentat its peak in the early 20th century.

(Video) Wind Instruments for Kids - Musical Instruments


Osaxophonewas invented in Belgium in the 1840s and developed byInstrumentenbauer Adolphe Sax, which gives it a much shorter history than othermusical instrumentson this list.

Althoughthe bodies of saxophonesusually consist ofMetal, are technically classified asHolzblasinstrumentedue tocanaused on the mouthpiece and its familiar association with instruments such as theclarinet.

Osaxophonepresents aSingle Reed Mouthpieceand about 22 keys (depending on the model) that open and close to change the pitch.

it's popularInstrumentamong beginners due to its versatility and the fact that it can reach an intermediate level relatively quickly compared to other alternatives.

Although originally used in classical music, it has been used in all manner of modern genres since the 1920s, perhaps most notably in jazz, where it has been a feature of nearly all music, from swing and bebop to contemporary jazz.

You can figure it out beautifullycana Instrumentin action in our summary ofThe best saxophonists of all time.


Ofluteit is one of the first instruments ever created and has been made from a variety of materials over the centuries.

It has a long history of building in wood and bone, but modernityfluteIt is made of silver and other metals.

Most flutes are side-brewed (hence the official description as "he wantsflute'), although some lesser-known variations of theInstrumentinstead, they are blown and give theInstrumentan appearance similar to a tape recorder or whistle.

Unlike some of the earlier instruments on this list, theflutemissing onecanaand depends on the movement of air through an opening to make aklang.

An orchestra can have up to fifteen flutes, depending on the arrangement, and occurs on many more modern flutes.jazz styles.

In fact, if you listen to many of thegreat recordings of great jazz ensembles, you will hear the subtle but important colorflutecomplements the music.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (2)

Because of their similarity in fingering, many jazz musicianssaxophoneplayerwill also playflute, use it as a secondaryInstrument.

I play the flute

Although similar in appearance, the piccolo is about half the size of traditional flutes.

actually theInstrumentThe name means exactly 'half the size' in Italian - as those of you who have ordered a cafe piccolo will know!

Sometimes known as the piccolo flute, the piccolo is the highest register of the tuned woodwind family. if you can play itflute, you shouldn't have any problems mastering thisInstrument.

It is much less common in jazz, although musicians such as Hubert Laws, Sun Ra's Marshall Allena and Lloyd McNeill have used it.Instrumentin your recordings.


Bassoons were first seen in orchestras in the early 17th century and became more common in the 18th century.


the project ofbassoonis somewhat unusual, it originates fromdas Curtal, a previousMusicalInstrument.

It consists of an elongated tube three meters long, gradually increasing in diameter, folded in half so that it can be held with both hands.

The whistle is made of wood and has opening and closing holes.Instrumentto change the pitch of notes - similar to aclarinetEsaxophone.

to play thembassoon, you blow through a doublecanaconnected to a curveMetaljar.

Obassoonit has a relatively low pitch, although not as low as its older brother, the contrabassoon, which is significantly larger.

although so distinguishedklangIt has not yet entered the jazz mainstream, there are a handful of musicians in this genre.bassoon.

Check out the great Michael Rabinowitz for an introduction.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (3)


OTrumpetis perhaps the most popularmess Instrument, with many budding musicians starting out.

Assaxophone, is incredibly versatile.

It's lively and brightklangit can be heard in a wide variety of genres, from classical to pop to jazz.

In contrast to thesaxophone, although it is very old, with primitive versions ofTrumpetThey are believed to have been used as signaling devices in ancient cultures.

while theTrumpetAn integral part of the classical orchestra, it gained new life in the 20th century as popular jazzInstrumentplayed by people likeMiles Davis e Louis Armstrong.

The legendary Miles Davis album, Kind of a great introduction toTrumpet'Sklangno jazz.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (4)


OTubaand themessthe biggest familyInstrument; the "grandfather" of the family, if you will. As such, it is also the lowestmess Instrumentin terms of step.

(Video) Instrument Demonstration for Beginning Band

OTubais mostly heard in orchestras andmessbands, but is sometimes used as a substitute for double bass in jazz due to its bass range.

New Orleans style marching band, which usually occur outdoors, use aTubaor sousaphone - a type of tube shaped to wrap around the player) for basslines due to their powerklangand portability.

Although the first examples of this date from the early 20th century, theTubahas seen something of a renaissance in recent years, with players like Theon Cross embracing the use of theInstrumentin morepioneering styles of contemporary jazz.

You can read more about some of thethe most famous jazz tuba players of all time here.


a descendant ofTrumpet, to dietromboneit has a similar mouthpiece and flared bell, but features a slide instead of valves to alter the pitch of notes.

Its name actually comes from the Italian word for "big".Trumpet" it's attromboneIts roots go back to Europe, when it was originally called "sackbutt".

The slide gives itInstrumenta fun and playfulklanglends itself well to jazz, but is also a powerful and important part of the classical orchestra andmessBands.

OInstrumentThe musical register is relatively low, but high enough to cover the various clefs. Music in bass clef is composed for brass bands, orchestras and big bandsmessBand trombonists should read the notes in the treble clef.

Variations of the TraditionaltromboneThese include alto, piccolo and basstrombonejust like the valvetrombonewhich was famously used byA lenda do jazz Bob Brookmeyer.


The euphonium is amess Instrumentthat looks like aTuba, just smaller.

Along with seven othersmessinstruments(including thebaritoneHornand flugelhorn) belong to the "sax horn" family, which was curiously developed byAdolf Saxthe inventor of the saxophone.

The euphonium itself was invented by Sommer of Weimar in 1843 and matched the valved horn (Flügelhorn) and the horn. there is aTuba-like a wide tapered bore and is held vertically with the bell facing upwards, although in the United States the bell usually faces forward.

It has a powerful yet mellow tone and is a common feature in military marches andmessBands due to their ability to blend in with othersmessinstruments.

Euphonium is definitely less versatile than othermessinstrumentslike themTrumpet,tromboneETuba, But this isklangit is unique and beautifully soft.

Although its use in jazz is limited, there are some great examples, including this compilation.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (5)


Often associated with Scotland, bagpipes are something unusual.Instrumentdating back to 100 BC.

variations ofInstrumentthey are found throughout Europe, North Africa and the Persian Gulf, as well as parts of Asia.

OInstrumentIt consists of several tubes and a bag made of animal skin or fabric. The tubes produce aklangthrough the vibration of a singlecanaor a doublecana.

(Video) Why Does Music Only Use 12 Different Notes?

With most bagpipes, the bag - an airtight reservoir - is filled with air via a blowtorch and forced through the tubes by pressure from the arms.

Most variations ofInstrumentcontain at least one drone whistle that plays a constant note and at least one "singer" whistle that provides the melody.

Bagpipes are quite complicated to play and are rarely offered by music schools and services, so start with that.Instrumentit's not particularly easy.

But if you can have a sourceInstrumentand find a good tutor (and patient neighbors), it will definitely be an interesting hobby!


OharmonicaOn the other hand, it is one of the most accessibletypeswind instrumentsto pick up and play.

Often used in blues and folk music,To dieharmonicait's a simpleVentoInstrumentit is often used to accompany singing. Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder and Sonny Boy Williamson are just a few big names to master.Instrument.

Also known as the harmonica,To dieharmonicaContains reeds that produce different tones depending on their length. They're lightweight and generally inexpensive, but if you've got the skill, they'll withstand a jam session.

One of the great examples ofTo dieharmonicais in jazzlegendary European musician Toots Thielemans.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (6)

Thank you for reading this snapshot of the many and variedtypeswind instrumentsout there.

If you want to learn aneuInstrument, but I don't know where to start thisAltsaxophoneor theTrumpetThey aregreat jazz instrumentsfor starters.

Both are easy to get, relatively inexpensive (if you wanta beginner option) and there are plenty of tutors out there who can show you the basics.

Ready to research specific makes and models? Go to our beginners guidealto saxophoneor our list of the bestjazz trombones.

The 12 Most Famous Types of Wind Instruments [Complete Guide] (7)

discover jazz

(Video) How to speak so that people want to listen | Julian Treasure

The Discover Jazz label is associated with articles edited and published by Jazzfuel host Matt Fripp, but written in collaboration with various jazz musicians and industry figures. When appropriate, these musicians are cited and verified by name in the article itself!


How many types of wind instruments are there? ›

Wind instruments are typically grouped into two families:
  • Brass instruments (horns, trumpets, trombones, euphoniums, and tubas)
  • Woodwind instruments (recorders, flutes, oboes, clarinets, saxophones, and bassoons)

What is the most famous woodwind instrument? ›

Clarinet. This German woodwind instrument was created in the 1700s and remains one of the most well-known types of wind instruments. What is this? The mouthpiece features a single reed and has a cylindrical tube shape.

What is a list of a woodwind instrument? ›

The woodwind family of instruments includes, from the highest sounding instruments to the lowest, the piccolo, flute, oboe, English horn, clarinet, E-flat clarinet, bass clarinet, bassoon and contrabassoon.

How many woodwind instruments are there in the world? ›

The woodwind family of instruments includes these 6 major instruments: Flutes and piccolos. Saxophones. Clarinets.

What are the 6 wind systems? ›

The Earth contains five major wind zones: polar easterlies, westerlies, horse latitudes, trade winds, and the doldrums.

What is wind instrument name four? ›

Common examples include flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, and saxophone. There are two main types of woodwind instruments: flutes and reed instruments (otherwise called reed pipes). The main distinction between these instruments and other wind instruments is the way in which they produce sound.

What is the biggest wind instrument? ›

The bassoon: a guide to the orchestra's largest wind instrument | Classical Music.

What are the 4 instrument families? ›

Orchestra Instrument Families: Strings, Woodwinds, Brass, Percussion | Oregon Symphony.

What is the easiest wind instrument for kids? ›

Three easy and popular woodwind instruments for beginners are flute, clarinet, and alto saxophone because of their size, weight, and complexity. Learning any of these requires a degree of concentration best suited to students at least 10 years old, when they can learn to read music without difficulty.

What is the smallest wind instrument? ›

The Piccolo is the smallest Woodwind instrument and makes the highest sound in the orchestra. The flute is slightly larger and makes the second highest sound.

What wind instrument starts with F? ›

Flute – A wind musical instrument made out of wood, bone, metal or some other materials in the form of a tube with various round holes that are covered by fingers or keys. The instrument is played by blowing a stream of air into the tube through a sharp edge opening.

Which instrument is played by blowing air? ›

Flute is played by blowing air into the instrument. The wind that you blow in, makes the air particles inside the flute shake and move back and forth.

What is the loudest woodwind instrument? ›

While the French horn may be the loudest instrument, it is by no means the only one that produces dangerously loud sounds. Below is a list of common instruments and their decibel outputs when played at their loudest: Trombone: 85 to 114 db.

How old is the oldest woodwind instrument? ›

The first known woodwind instrument appeared over 43,000 years ago in the form of a flute carved from the thigh bone of a bear. Other flutes from this time period have been discovered to be made from bird bones and mammoth tusks, chosen for their hollowness once the marrow has been removed.

What is the deepest woodwind instrument? ›

The contrabassoon, also known as the double bassoon, is the contrabass instrument in the woodwind section and, together with the contrabass tuba, the deepest instrument in the orchestra.

What are the 12 winds? ›

If set out on a compass card, Aristotle's system could be conceived of as a twelve-wind rose with four cardinal winds (N, E, S, W), four "solstitial winds" (loosely speaking, NW, NE, SE, SW), two "polar winds" (roughly NNW, NNE) and two "non-winds" (SSW, SSE).

What are the 13 categories of wind? ›

  • Light winds at 1-5 kph (1-3 mph). ...
  • Light breeze at 6-11 kph (4-7 mph). ...
  • Gentle breeze at 12-19 kph (8-12 mph). ...
  • Gentle breeze at 20-28 kph (13-18 mph). ...
  • Fresh breeze at 29-38 kph (19-24 mph). ...
  • Strong breeze at 39-49 kph (25-31 mph). ...
  • Moderate gale at 50-61 kph (32-38 mph). ...
  • Fresh gale at 62-74 kph (39-46 mph).
May 19, 2022

What are Category 7 wind types? ›

Primary Wind or Planetary Wind

Primary winds are also known as prevailing winds or planetary winds. Trade winds, westerlies and easterlies are different types of primary wind.

What are wind instruments Class 8? ›

Wind instruments:

In a wind instrument, the sound is produced by the vibration of air in a hollow tube. The frequency of the sound is varied by changing the length of the vibrating air column. Trumpet, Flute, Shehnai and Saxophone are some well-known wind instruments.

What is the name of Japanese wind instrument? ›

1. Shakuhachi. One of the most popular traditional Japanese wind instruments is the shakuhachi. Better known as the Japanese flute, this instrument has been used by Zen Buddhists as a spiritual tool for meditation practices known as 'suizen' (吹禅).

Is The Voice a wind instrument? ›

The voice is fundamentally a wind instrument. We use air to make sound, rather than vibrating strings or hitting objects.

What is the main wind instrument? ›

Wind instruments include the woodwinds, such as the flute, the clarinet, the oboe, and the bassoon. Wind instruments also include brass instruments, such as the trumpet, the horn, the trombone, and the tuba. The saxophone is considered a woodwind, but it may be made of brass.

How many instruments are there? ›

It is estimated that there are over 1500 different musical instruments in the world. These instruments are segregated into different categories that include woodwind, percussion, brass, keyboard, and the guitar family.

What are the 5 main instruments? ›

There are five main instrument families: strings, woodwind, brass, keyboards, and percussion.

What are the 5 main types of instruments? ›

Instruments are classified using 5 different categories depending on the manner in which the instrument creates the sound: Idiophones, Membranophones, Chordophones, Aerophones, & Electrophones.

What is the oldest known instrument? ›

The oldest musical instrument in the world, a 60,000-year-old Neanderthal flute is a treasure of global significance. It was discovered in Divje babe cave near Cerkno and has been declared by experts to have been made by Neanderthals. It is made from the left thighbone of a young cave bear and has four pierced holes.

What instrument should a 11 year old play? ›

Recommended Instruments: Piano and Drums are the most common choices for this age range, as children tend to flourish best when they do not have to lift or hold an instrument at first. We do not recommend ukulele*, guitar or brass/woodwind (school band) or larger string instruments yet for this reason.

What instrument has only 3 strings? ›


What is the best instrument for a 11 year old? ›

Top 10 Instruments for Children to Learn to Play Music
  • Piano.
  • Ukulele.
  • Drums.
  • Recorder.
  • Violin.
  • Guitar.
  • Flute.
  • Trumpet.
Mar 11, 2020

Which is not a wind instrument? ›

Flute, clarinet, and a mouth organ are wind instruments, as we blow air into them to generate music. On the other hand, a veena is a stringed musical instrument which produces sound, when its strings are plucked. Q.

What is the cheapest woodwind instrument? ›

The recorder is probably the cheapest and easiest woodwind instrument to learn. The recorder is a good choice for children under the age of 10. Recorders are light, inexpensive, and easy to make a sound on.

Are there electric wind instruments? ›

Electric wind instruments, or EWI, took a more subtle path among a niche audience of musicians. But with these newest digital models available online, anyone can start learning, experimenting, and recording right at home.

What instrument starts with Z? ›

zither, any stringed musical instrument whose strings are the same length as its soundboard. The European zither consists of a flat, shallow sound box across which some 30 or 40 gut or metal strings are stretched.

What instrument starts with U? ›

Ukulele – Small Hawaiian 4 nylon or gut string guitar of Portuguese origin. The ukulele derives from the Portuguese cavaquinho, also known as machête or braguinha. USA.

What instruments start with an A? ›

  • Alto recorder.
  • Angélique (instrument)
  • Anglo-Saxon lyre.
  • Archicembalo.
  • Archlute.

Which instrument is played by shaking? ›

Maracas come from Mexico. They are rattles, often made from gourds (a kind of squash), filled with dried seeds, beads or even tiny ball bearings that make them rattle. Maracas can also be made of wood or plastic; the sound they make depends on what they're made of. To play them, you hold them in your hands and shake.

How many blowing instruments are there? ›

18 Types of Wind Instruments: A Comprehensive List [Upd. 2023]

Is air guitar a real instrument? ›

Multiple technological innovations allow air guitar to be played as a real instrument, producing sounds that depend on the air guitarist's actions.

What is the softest instrument? ›

The Guqin, also called the Qin, is a quiet ancient Chinese instrument. It dates back to over 5,000 years ago. Experts consider it one of the softest musical instruments ever made.

What instruments does horror use? ›

  • Strings, Synths, Theremin and Guitars are instruments often used by horror movie filmmakers.
  • Common sound effects for horror are breathing, footsteps, monster vocalizations, ghosts and stabbings, all found on the Artlist SFX catalog.
Oct 25, 2021

What is the newest instrument? ›

What is the newest instrument 2022? The result is the Evolano — an “evolved piano.” The instrument has keys, action and hammers like a piano, aligned along a central ruler. The strings move with the keys, sliding over a curved fret that determines pitch.

Is the voice the oldest instrument? ›

Singing, the vocal production of musical tones, is so basic to man its origins are long lost in antiquity and predate the development of spoken language. The voice is presumed to be the original musical instrument, and there is no human culture, no matter how remote or isolated, that does not sing.

What is a small bassoon called? ›

Altoon (the combination of the words alto and bassoon), as a moniker for the smaller octave bassoon, has yet to catch on.

What is the lowest instrument? ›

Have you ever heard of classical music's lowest (and rarest) string instrument? It's called the octobass (a.k.a. octobasse) and was built in 1850 by French instrument maker Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume. It is tuned two octaves below a cello and stands a 12-feet tall.

What is bigger than a bassoon? ›

The Contrabassoon is the biggest instrument of the Woodwind family. The only difference is that it is double bigger than a Bassoon. It is played like the Bassoon and are made of the same materials. It produces its sound by blowing into the reed, like in the Bassoon.

What is the oldest wind instrument? ›

Crafted from the bones of crane birds, the flutes still maintain accurate intonation today. Dating back to 7,800 to 9,000 years ago, the Jiahu bone flute is the oldest Chinese musical instrument discovered by archaeologists, as well as the earliest known wind instrument in the world.

What is the hardest wind instrument to play? ›

Oboe. What is this? The Oboe is a reed instrument that requires a very precise mouth position. It is said that mastering the controlled breathing required to learn the oboe may be one of the most difficult aspects of any wind instrument.

What is the biggest blowing instrument? ›

The bassoon: a guide to the orchestra's largest wind instrument | Classical Music.

What is the loudest instrument ever? ›

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the loudest (and largest) instrument in the world is the Boardwalk Hall Auditorium Organ. This pipe organ was built by the Midmer-Losh Organ Company, and is housed in the Main Auditorium of the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

How many instruments exist? ›

5 Tuneful Origins of Celebrated Musical Instruments – Did you know there are over 1,500 musical instruments? These musical instruments are broken down into six major categories. The musical instrument categories include bowed strings, woodwind, brass, percussion, keyboard, and the guitar family.

What is the newest wind instrument? ›

The Venova is a single-reeded woodwind musical instrument, currently produced by the Yamaha Corporation.

What is the loudest wind instrument? ›

While the French horn may be the loudest instrument, it is by no means the only one that produces dangerously loud sounds. Below is a list of common instruments and their decibel outputs when played at their loudest: Trombone: 85 to 114 db. Flute: 85 to 111 db.

What is the easiest woodwind instrument to play? ›

Three easy and popular woodwind instruments for beginners are flute, clarinet, and alto saxophone because of their size, weight, and complexity. Learning any of these requires a degree of concentration best suited to students at least 10 years old, when they can learn to read music without difficulty.


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