Introduction to Popular Instruments

The following articles provide a brief description of some of the popular instruments across the categories of Woodwind, Brass, Strings, and Rhythm.

We have provide information on the following criteria for each instrument:

Purchase Price: This is what we’ve found to be an average price for a beginning instrument on up to a professional one. We know, there are both more and less expensive instruments out there. Our low end is for a beginners instrument that will play correctly. We know that there are gold and diamond encrusted instruments that are more money, but our high figure is what many professional players would pay.

Rental Price: If you’re not sure you want to commit to the purchase of an instrument, most teachers recommend that you rent first. Here we’ve listed the average price range for renting the particular instrument.

How Loud Is It?: You’ll be surprised how many instruments are about the same in this category, between 70-80 dbl. Once again, this is an average level. We know they can play louder and softer. We’ve listed the average level for the instrument. Here are some other levels, to give you some comparisons:

  • Whispering - 30dB,
  • City Traffic - 85dB,
  • Sandblasting, Loud Rock Concert - 115dB

Difficulty Level: This is a very subjective number, as some will take to instruments more quickly than others. Someone that loves playing an instrument won’t find the challenges difficult to manage, while someone who doesn’t feel a connection to their instrument will find everything about it hard. We looked at how quickly someone could become proficient on an instrument, in relation to other instruments, in coming up with our number on a scale of 1 being easiest, and 10 being hardest.

Can the Sound be Muted?: Which means can the sound of the instrument be reduced while practicing. Many parents will be especially interested in this question, especially if sound is a consideration for neighbors and relatives.

Weight: For someone riding a bike to/from school, or just to know how difficult transportation is, this category will help you plan for that.

Additional costs, What else you’ll need: We’ll let you know anything and everything else we can think of that should be included in the regular care, performance, and maintenance of an instrument.

Scholarship Opportunities: On average, we’ll let you know if University scholarships are available.

Performing Opportunities: Okay, you learned how to play an instrument, now what? We’ll give you an idea of what styles, and what kinds of groups you will be performing with.

Pros:Here are the positive points about the instrument.
Cons: Here are the negatives to factor into your decision

      - George Shelby


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