Musical instruments belong to particular families or group. Musical instruments in a family are related in terms of size, look, style, etc. Likewise, some members are large, some small, but will often have similar shapes or created of the same material. They may even produce similar sounds.
Have you ever imagined how a simple act of blowing air into instruments like flute, saxophone, trumpet or clarinet can produce a soothing sound? And then this sound creates meaningful music that serves as an inspiration to many music lovers. By this article, we will take you to the journey of the working of wind instruments and why they are so unique in the music world.
Wind Instruments: a brief history
Most wind instruments consist of a type of resonator where the player blows air inside the mouthpiece to produce a sound. The mouthpiece resides at the end of the resonator.
The wind instruments originated almost twenty thousand years back. The ancient man observed that a hollow piece of wood/ fruit shell could create calming sound when blown in a particular way. Also, with the help of this instrument, people could be closer to mother nature. It even helps humankind to communicate with the spiritual world or the other realm.
In ancient civilisation, wood was one of the most accessible resources. Even the Ancient Egyptians had developed some advanced wind instruments in that time to use it for religious rituals and day to day life. Besides, the Egyptian tried improving the techniques for trumpets, flute as well as clarinet predecessor.
On the other hand, ancient Greece connected these wind instruments with their gods as well as for celebration and tragedy. For example, Tibia or Aulos was linked with Dionysus, the god of wine, or Apollo, the sun god. However, the most fantastic innovation was pan flute, also known as the syrinx, which was made by tying together reeds of various lengths. Thus, different pitches are created by blowing into different reeds. Pan Flute was, in fact, common among the Native Americans as well.
Different types of Wind Instruments
Ideally, wind instruments are categorised into two different families. Here are the details of the two different types of wind instruments.
The Woodwind Family
Its name already suggests that the instrument is made up of wood. With the changing scenario, it i now also made by use of plastic, metals or any other combination. Depending on the air that’s blown into the instrument, these become easier to play. Also, it is much suitable for the musician who is about to begin in this fields
There are two significant types of woodwind instruments, reeds and flutes.
Flutes are one of the ancient woodwind instruments, and it maintains the design of the same. It is designed with only a hollow wood material and has ways for the moving air, whereas the sound is produced by blowing the air at the edge of the mouthpiece. Flutes were hugely popular during the Baroque period as it creates high sound.
On the other hand, the reeds can consist of single or double reeds. The single-reed instruments are clarinet and saxophone, whereas the double reed instruments are Oboe and Bassoon. When the player blows air in the reeds, then only it produces sound as the column vibrates due to the air blown into it.
The Brass Family
As its name suggests, these instruments are made up of brass material. Trumpets, Tubas, Trombones, French Horns are some of the brass instruments. It is generally designed as a long pipe that widens at the end like a bell shape. At the time of playing the instrument, the instrumentalist’s lips use to vibrate, which causes air to vibrate within the instrument. One can change the pitch and produce soothing sound by buzzing lips hard or soft and pressing various valves.
With this, we wish you got a brief idea of wind instruments and the details of their music. Wind Instrument of nowadays is the amazing of history predecessors. Although modern revolution has changed, then a lot still the roots remain unchanged, and it produces timeless music till date.
Check my article on how to care for your woodwind instruments