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Questions tagged [instruments]

For questions about generalities about instruments or groups of instruments.

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7
votes
13answers
6k views

The quietest classical orchestra instrument to play at home [on hold]

I want to learn to play a new instrument to some extent (which is a part of a classical/romantic orchestra) in order to understand what is possible with this type of instruments and what not, which ...
3
votes
1answer
37 views

Protection of violins when moving to a new climate

I am about to move from a hot, dry climate (Johannesburg) to a very humid, cool climate (Overberg, South Africa). Is there anything I can do to protect my violins from the impact of the climate change?...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

What is this sound, instrument? (Rheingold, Wagner)

I am currently composing something and I really want to have this sound in my piece. It sounds like a small hammer hammering on metal. It starts at 1:08:07 (...
4
votes
1answer
51 views

What kind of whistle is it that raises in pitch?

What kind of whistle sounding instrument is it that for example can be heard throughout this song (first time at 0:47)? It also serves as the whistle of Mysterious ...
2
votes
1answer
89 views

How did musicians know what were the notes frequencies if they had no measuring tools? [duplicate]

Today we have devices that with the aid of a microphone can detect the frequency of a note. We can therefore calibrate all instruments and voices to a same pattern. But, how did people know how the ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

What are the common instrument blends in classical/romantic symphonies? [closed]

The motivation of my question "What are the common instrument blends in classical/romantic symphonies?" is to learn which instrument combinations (e.g. clarinet + violin, horn + oboe + bassoon etc..), ...
6
votes
4answers
185 views

Which instruments (besides piano) are in one to one correspondence with its range of notes? [closed]

We know that for each note in a piano's range, there is only one key pertaining to that note. This is in contrast to, say, a guitar where there are multiple ways to play, say, middle C. Are there ...
8
votes
5answers
41k views

Can I play a 12 string like a 6 string guitar?

I have a cheap 6-string guitar. I want to get a new one and am considering a 12-string guitar. What are the differences between 12- and 6-string guitars? Can I use a 12-string like a 6-string? Will ...
11
votes
4answers
430 views

Which (apparently keyboard) instrument is this?

I discovered this image recently while reading about piano. I discovered this young Portuguese pianist photo, Vianna da Motta, while learning in his early stages. I assume this is some kind of ...
0
votes
4answers
497 views

Stradivaris: are they worth their price? [closed]

An ordinary violin may cost about 1000 dollars. A Stradivari may cost some millions. Why are Stradivaris so expensive? Are they worth their price?
7
votes
3answers
1k views

GuitarPro: Change to Eb, but keep notation in E

I just downloaded GuitarPro 7.5. I used to use GuitarPro quite a bit, but it's been a while. I like to tune down and play in Eb. I want to change a song to sound 1/2 step lower, but want to keep ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

What instruments are playing in this Frank Sinatra cover? [closed]

Writing an essay on this song and I can't seem to figure out the instruments playing on this youtube video and want to make sure I get it correct. Beginning at 0:00 - 0:04. Before Sinatra sings. 0:17 ...
34
votes
12answers
26k views

Can I play pipe organ as a pianist?

I've never played pipe organ. I'm a pianist and a friend of mine ask me to play on the church on his wedding on a pipe organ. Are there enough difficulties playing a piano song on the pipe organ to ...
18
votes
13answers
2k views

instruments you can make at home

Some of the children I teach have expressed an interest in music and learning to play. I am thinking about how I can help them do a sort of arts-and-crafts music day, where we could make some ...
0
votes
2answers
140 views

What is this Japanese bell instrument used on “Ryuichi Sakamoto - Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence”? [closed]

at 0:56 the bells are playing the main melody. I hear this type of bell a lot in Japanese songs. What is this instrument called ?
9
votes
5answers
20k views

Do vintage guitars really sound better with age? Or is this perception affected by selection bias?

Guitars are often said to sound better with age. How much of it is due to worse-sounding guitars being discarded before they reach vintage age?
44
votes
3answers
6k views

Why do instruments have a key?

There are many instruments that have keys other than C. For example: The Eb Alto Saxophone The Bb Clarinet The Horn in F Why do these instruments have a key in the first place? Here's a more ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Difference between 6 holed and 7 holed Indian bamboo flute?

I'm planning to buy an Indian bamboo flute. I found out today that there are Indian bamboo flutes with a different number of holes. There is one with 6 fingering holes called Bansuri and one with 7 ...
2
votes
3answers
143 views

How do different time signatures change how a song sounds?

I know that time signatures change how a song sound, but I don't know the rule, or how it does that. If a song is in 4/4 and it got changed into 6/8, I don't know how it would sound, or how much it ...
3
votes
1answer
320 views

Troubleshooting Roland analog synthesizer's 'moving' dead notes

I have a 1982 Roland Juno-60 'polyphonic' analog synthesizer. Starting about 6 months ago it began having 'moving' dead notes. What I mean by that, is that there is no evidence that any one key is '...
4
votes
1answer
74 views

Is it normal for oud strings to touch other pegs on the head?

Recently I bought a cheap old oud without strings. I am an irish bouzouki player, so the wooden tuning pegs and the curved, angled head of the instrument is all new to me. The is noone near my place ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Is it harder to play instruments in the morning? [closed]

Does anyone find it harder to play instruments in the morning? When I play piano at 8 9 10 am, fingers just feel so weird and brain is slow. Playing violin is much tougher because all my muscles are ...
0
votes
1answer
86 views

Software needed to change a church hymn for organ to a string. Can it be done?

I am looking for software that can convert a MIDI file in organ to a string or trumpet etc. automatically. Is there such a program? Any help is appreciated.
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Duplicate instruments in unison in an orchestra

Theoretically, each addition of a sound identical to the previous one results in a 6db increase in the final sound result. I ask: is that why in some orchestrations we see, for example, 6 clarinets ...
56
votes
11answers
22k views

Do advanced musicians still practice scales every day?

I'm wondering if you're ever "done" or do you just go practicing them forever?
23
votes
10answers
5k views

Are there any instruments that don't produce overtones?

Essentially all instruments produce overtones, which are frequencies other than the dominant frequency of the note. -- How do harmonics work? The use of "essentially" there got me thinking. Are ...
6
votes
3answers
11k views

How do I assess the value of a guitar when I'm preparing to sell it?

How do I go about researching the value of my instrument before I put it up for sale? I'd like to feel like I've done a proper amount of due diligence before I put it on the used market so I can both ...
0
votes
2answers
219 views

Import instrument libraries into GarageBand after 10.3.2?

As of version 10.3.2, GarageBand appears to have lost the ability to import other instruments or libraries. Is there a way to import third party instruments into GarageBand in 10.3? Along those ...
6
votes
2answers
125 views

Did the rain stick originate independently in multiple continents?

There is a traditional rain stick (percussion instrument) in Africa, Latin America, and I believe in Australia as well. Was it invented separately, or did one culture influence another? Here is a ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Do I need an audio interface for recording if I have a mixer with a built-in USB?

I have Volca series synths and Behringer xenyx 802. I can record each Volca separately with an audio interface to my computer but If I want to play them and record them together (which is better for ...
46
votes
16answers
81k views

What instruments are inexpensive, portable and not too loud?

I'm a college student, and I'd really like to start playing an instrument. But I want to find something that is: Inexpensive Small and portable enough to fit in a backpack Quiet enough to practice in ...
4
votes
4answers
133 views

Can I leave an accordion for 1 night in a car while its freezing outside?

I'm taking my accordion on a road trip and I need to leave it in a car while I'm camping outside. Its going to be below freezing at night, 25F. Its a used vintage accordion that did not cost me much ...
19
votes
11answers
66k views

Difference between Baritone and Euphonium

What is the difference between a baritone and a euphonium, and how can you tell? My band director sometimes uses them interchangeably, but I am pretty sure that is not correct. All I know is that this ...
0
votes
5answers
175 views

Choosing an instrument to double on

I am a saxophonist who has been contemplating the idea of doubling on another wind instrument for a long time. My teacher recommends doubling on flute (closed tone holes), but professional-level ...
-1
votes
1answer
62 views

Why can human voices sound like musicians' instruments? [closed]

We could represent any classical music using human voice. Why?
1
vote
1answer
64 views

Computer-controlled portable reed organ?

The "Melauton" is a computer-controlled reed organ built from a melodica. Is there any record of similar instruments being built?
-3
votes
2answers
42 views

Bach 3G or Denis Wick 4.5AL for baritone? [closed]

I’ve got a Bb baritone that takes large shank mouthpieces. Should I get a 3g or 4.5al?
1
vote
2answers
79 views

When to use sub-brackets for similar instruments within a section?

In some scores, especially printed sheet music, “like” instruments in larger sections will be grouped together with sub-brackets, such as piccolos with flutes, oboes with English horns, clarinets and ...
37
votes
17answers
67k views

How to minimize the pain for a beginning guitar student so they won’t give up before they develop callouses?

This is a common problem and solving it will ultimately lead to a much higher success rate for beginning guitar students. So I wanted to share the information here on Music and Theory. Many of my ...
3
votes
1answer
79 views

What are the mechanics behind flute keys used to play chromatic notes?

I recently listened to recordings of the bansuri, a bamboo flute used in Indian (Hindu) music, and I thought about trying to make one myself from scratch. A tutorial I found on wikiHow makes the ...
3
votes
3answers
217 views

Are some intrument combinations incompatible? [closed]

Apart from instruments that are out of tune relative to each other, are there combinations of instruments that are incompatible with each other, and why. Do instruments even have to be in tune ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the oldest instrument ever?

What is the oldest musical instrument played other than the human voice, but body parts are acceptable? Did Neanderthals use instruments to play music?
1
vote
2answers
93 views

What is this blowing instrument used in the acoustic cover of “Taekwondo” by “Walk off the Earth”? [closed]

At around 1:44 of the acoustic cover of Taekwondo by "Walk of the Earth", the musicians play a blowing instrument. What instrument is this?
5
votes
1answer
2k views

What Musical Instrument is this? [closed]

So I came across this Snarky Puppy's video and I saw an instrument that I'm not familiar with. Hoping you guys could tell me what's this instrument called? Thanks!
15
votes
6answers
2k views

Genetic limitations to learn certain instruments

This is something that has bothered me for quite a while. I frequently participate in instrument demonstrations for children. My focus is on wind instruments but I'm also curious about others. What I ...
1
vote
4answers
1k views

Is there a lightweight keyboard piano that doesn't require any energy supply?

Is there a type of keyboard that doesn't require batteries or any electricity of any kind? also one that is extremely portable like a guitar? It should also sound like a normal piano without any ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

Do cold/hot drinks have any effect on woodwinds and brass performers?

Hey, I saw this question and I immediately remembered one or two teachers that kept saying that drinking cold/hot drinks before and/or during playing any woodwind or brass instrument was a bad thing, ...
6
votes
4answers
464 views

Pitch and Volume Compensations for Different Instruments

I'm curious if various instruments require that the player compensate in any way (in terms of technique, e.g., force used to bow, force used to blow, or embouchure alterations) when playing low vs. ...
4
votes
1answer
128 views

Bass scale length pros and cons [duplicate]

For the last two years I’ve been seriously learning the guitar as my second instrument. I also bought a used low quality bass that I have been playing for the last 6 months or so. I am really enjoying ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

Beginner looking to learn/master musical theory and instrumental ability. Where should I begin? [closed]

I have always had a subtle but under the hood feel that music is for me. I've never trained myself nor had any real dedicated musical practice, but I have composed music on my computer. What I don't ...