Published on : 03 February 20203 min reading time

Main families of musical instruments

There are three main families of musical instruments; string, wind and percussion. Each of these three families contains many instruments. String instruments include violin, cello and all instruments played with a bow, plucked string instruments include those played with a plectrum, such as the guitar and finally struck string instruments that are played with hammers or tangents.

Stringed instruments

The sound of these instruments is produced by the vibration of one or more strings. These strings are fixed on its body, which at the same time acts as an amplifier. Among these stringed instruments, we can find the Oud.

 The Oud

The Oud is a stringed instrument widely used in Arab countries. It is made up of a large hardwood sound box which is originally produced from walnut, mahogany, maple or beech trees.

The Oud’s neck is made of wood, it is short and ends with a tailpiece forming an angle of about 50° to support the strings held by ankles. The Oud’s saddle is made of bone or ebony wood. For the soundboard, it is made of softwood or cedar. The Oud is sometimes used as a melodic or rhythmic bass in instrumental ensembles.

Wind instruments

Wind instruments refer to instruments that produce a sound by a mechanical wind tunnel, by a musician’s breath or by an air pocket. We can distinguish in particular instruments gathering flutes, mouthpieces musical instruments, etc. There are also reed instruments such as accordions, harmonicas, clarinets, oboes, saxophones and bombards. Finally, there are instruments that use the vibration of the lips at a mouthpiece to produce a sound, such as trumpets, didgeridoo, trombones, horns and tubas.

The flute

The common transverse flute is actually part of the large category of hand-held, pipe-shaped instruments in which one blows. They are referred to by “flutes”. The fingers cover holes along the pipe at tone intervals to control the length of the vibrating air column.

Combination musical instruments

Combination instruments combine several types of vibration settings. In particular, we can distinguish mechanical instruments such as the barrel organ and the Serinette. There is also the Claviorganum, which combines the harpsichord and is operated by a single keyboard. Finally, there is the Marble Machine which combines the vibraphone, bass guitar, cymbal and percussion produced mainly by contact microphones.

The Orgue

It is a wind instrument. It is composed of one-note pipes, tuned to a defined scale, powered by a wind tunnel, and operated by one or more keyboards.