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NON-TRANSPOSING INSTRUMENT Non-transposing Instruments: These are instruments which sound the notated pitch they are playing,

though sometimes displaced by an octave (higher or lower). Non-transposing (concert pitch) instruments include: piccolo (sounds 8vaoctave higher); flute; oboe; bassoon; trombone; euphonium; tuba; xylophone (sounds 8va); marimba; orchestra bells (sounds two octaves higher); vibraphone; celesta (sounds 8va); violin; viola; cello; string bass (sounds octave lower); harp; guitar (sounds octave lower); piano.

Ranges and transpositions for common instruments:

Musical Instrument Ranges and Names :

Bowed Strings (1) |

Violin | more ... sounds at written pitch Violino piccolo | more... the small violin information about tuning Viola | more ... sounds at written pitch Viola d'amore | more... instrument with six bowed strings and six steel strings, the latter neither bowed nor plucked (tuning, from eighteenth century: A, d, a, d', f#', a', d'') Tenor Violin | more ... tuned an octave below the standard violin Violoncello piccolo | more... a small cello with an extra e'-string above the normal strings (C, G, d & a) Violoncello (Cello) | more ... sounds at written pitch Double Bass | more ... sounds an octave below written pitch with four strings sometimes fitted with a fifth string tuned to low C Rebec | more...

Renaissance Violin | more... Baroque Violin | more... Twentieth-century Violin Octet | more ...

Bowe d String s (2) |

Pardessus de Viol | more ... sounds at written pitch Treble Viol | more ... sounds at written pitch Alto Viol | more ... sounds at written pitch Tenor Viol | more ... sounds at written pitch Lyra Viol a small bass viol popular in England during the seventeenth century. It differed otherwise little from the standard bass viol. Its repertory, notated in tablature, is predominantly polyphonic and played mainly with the bow. The

sources include pieces for one lyra viol or more, and lyra viol accompanime nt for songs, by composers such as Coprario, Jenkins, William Lawes and Tobias Hume. At least 60 different tunings have been noted. Division Viol an English form of bass viola da gamba, used in the seventeenth century for performing free ornamentation by varying given melodies. It was the equivalent of the European viola bastarda, and was smaller than a consort bass viol but larger than a lyra viol. Bass Viol | more ... sometimes a seventh string added tuned to

A below bass clef sounds at written pitch also sometimes called the 'Viola da Gamba' although strictly all viols are 'da gamba', that is they are played down on the lap or between the player's legs (gamba being the Italian for 'leg' Consort of Viols | more... the viol consort was introduced to England in the early sixteenth century and was mainstay of domestic music until the middle of the seventeenth century. After the Restoration of Charles II to the throne in 1660, things rapidly changed with the rise in popularity of the violin amongst court musical lfe

and amateurs. Composers soon ceased to contribute to the viol consort repertory, with some of Purcell's contemporarie s such as Roger North regretting the change. North acknowledged that the violin was 'very excellent in it's kind', but thought that the 'noble Base Viol' embodied all its 'sublimitys'. As North recognised, the viol was not entirely supplanted by the violin in the Restoration period. The bass viol remained in use as a continuo instrument in chamber music until the early eighteenth century, and the instrument acquired a new repertory of solos, duet and trios with continuo.

Violone | more... (Italian, literally 'large viol') in modern terminology, the double bass viol, the direct ancestor of the double bass. Historically, the term has embraced a variety of meanings: any viol, a large viol (in particular a low-pitched viola da gamba), and even (in some Italian sources) the cello. The term is known as early as 1520. Electric Viola da Gamba | more... one of the most exciting extensions of this remarkable family of bowed stringed instruments, the Ruby Electric Viola da Gamba is a seven-string bass viol.

Plucked Strings |

Guitar | more ... sounds an octave below written pitch. the guitar is a musical instrument, used in a wide variety of musical styles, and is also widely known as a solo classical instrument. It is most recognized in popular culture as the primary instrument in blues, country, flamenco, pop, and rock music. The guitar usually has six strings, but guitars with four, seven, eight, ten, and twelve strings also exist. Guitars are made and repaired by luthiers. Lute | more ... the name lute refers both to any plucked string instrument with a fretted neck and a deep round back and specifically to an instrument from the family of European lutes. Lute and oud both descend from a common ancestor, with diverging evolutionary paths. The words 'lute' and 'oud' may have derived from Arabic alud, "the wood", though recent research by Eckhard Neubauer suggests that ud may simply be an Arabized version of the Persian name rud, which meant string, stringed instrument, or lute. Gianfranco Lotti suggests that the "wood" appellation originally carried derogatory connotations, because of

proscriptions of all instrumental music in early Islam. The player of a lute is called a lutenist, lutanist or lutist, and a maker of lutes (or any string instrument) is called a luthier. For tuning information on the lute please refer here The archlute is a lute with two pegboxes, the first being used for the main courses of strings (6 to 8 in number) that were played with the fingers of the left hand, and the second holding the longer strings, either courses or single strings, that were only played as open strings in the bass register. The archlute was particularly well adapted to continuo work, but nevertheless had a repertoire of solo pieces written for it. The archlute was the Italian baroque lute by definition. The theorbo was apparently an extension of the archlute, its body being larger and the neck containing the second pegbox for the lower strings being even longer. The theorbo could reach a total of two metres in length. There were, however, various other differences, the theorbo often being strung with single strings and not in courses. Its tuning was also individual in that the first two strings were

tuned an octave lower, this occurring because the main neckpiece was approximately 20 centimetres longer than that of the archlute. The third string was therefore the highest. Even though the instrument seems to have been almost specifically used for continuo work, there are some instances of its use as a solo instrument. Mandolin | more ... sounds at written pitch a mandolin is a small, stringed musical instrument which is plucked, strummed or a combination of both. It is descended from the mandora. It is characterized by:

Eight metal strings in four pairs (courses) that are plucked with a plectrum, A body with a teardrop-shaped soundtable (i.e. face), or one that is essentially oval in shape, A neck with a flat (or slightly radiused) fretted fingerboard, and a nut and floating bridge, A tailpiece or pinblock at the edge of the face to which the strings are attached

Mechanical tuning machines, rather than friction pegs, A soundtable with a soundhole, or soundholes, of varying shapes that are open and not latticed.

Although the most common tuning for the mandolin is in fifths, the same as for the violin (GD-A-E, lowest to highest), guitarists may occasionally tune a mandolin to mimic a portion of the intervals on a standard guitar tuning to achieve familiar fretting patterns Ukelele/Ukulele | more ... sounds at written pitch Five String Banjo | more ... sounds an octave below written pitch Early Plucked & Fretted Instruments | more...

Harp |

Orchestral Harp | more ... written on two staves sounds at written pitch the pedal harp, or concert harp, is large and technically modern, designed for classical music and played solo, as part of chamber ensembles, and in symphony orchestras. It typically has six and a half octaves (46 or 47 strings),

weighs about 80lb (36 kg), is approximately 6 ft (1.8 m) high, has a depth of 4 ft (1.2 m), and is 21.5 in (55 cm) wide at the bass end of the soundboard. The notes range from three octaves below middle C (or the D above) to three and a half octaves above, usually ending on G. The tension of the strings on the sound board is roughly equal to a ton (10 kilonewtons). The lowest strings are made of copper or steel-wound nylon, the middle strings of gut, and the highest of nylon. Celtic Harp | more... Baroque Harp | more... A History of the Harp

Flutes |

Piccolo in C | more ... sounds an octave above written pitch Piccolo in Db | more ... sounds a minor 9th above written pitch in band music, the Db piccolo, rather than the larger orchestral C piccolo, was the mainstay until the early twentieth century, when the Db parts were gradually transposed for the C piccolo because of its stronger tone. The Db piccolo however, retains the distinction of being the first woodwind instrument to be added to the American brass bands of the mid-nineteenth century

Flute in C | more ... sounds at written pitch Flute in Eb | more ... the Eb soprano flute or Terzflte is somewhat smaller and sounds a minor third higher than the C flute. This less well known member of the flute family was originally used in U.S. public school bands as a substitute for the more expensive Eb clarinet from approximately the 1940s through the early 1970s as well as a beginner flute for students with very small hands. Since its tone color and range was unlike that of the Eb clarinet, and since most beginners were either able to handle the C flute without problems or else buy one with a curved headjoint, manufacturers stopped making them around 1980. However, due to the popularity of flute choirs, one U.S. manufacturer (Emerson) began to make them again in 1991, as there are more and more pieces of flute choir music that require the instrument. Its distinctive tone color, sounding sweeter than the C flute and more mellow than the piccolo, makes the Eb flute a unique member of the flute family whose potential is yet to be fully explored Alto Flute in G | more ... sounds a perfect fourth below written pitch

Flte d'amour in Bb | more ... the modern tenor flute, also known in the nineteenth century as the flte d'amour or alto flute in Bb, is pitched one step below the C flute. It has the same fingering range as the C flute but sounds its best in the middle and low registers. It has a much stronger sound in the low register than the C flute and is, therfore, useful for transposing extremely low C flute parts to provide a better balance in orchestral or ensemble playing. Tenor flutes are currently made by Emerson and Altus and come in both closed and open hole models; however, with its somewhat larger tubing and wider-spaced keys, the closed-hole model is probably easier to play. Tenor flutes today are extremely rare and generally are only used for jazz as they are in the same key as tenor saxophones and clarinets, making it easier for the jazz musician to double on all three instruments Bass Flute | more ... sounds an octave below written pitch Renaissance Flute | more... Baroque Flute | more ... Classical Flute | more ...

Historical Flutes: general information Rick Wilson's Historical Flute Page

Clarinets |

Piccolo, Octave and Sopranino Clarinets | more ... Clarinet in E flat | more ... sounds a minor third higher than written pitch Clarinet in B flat | more ... sounds a major second below written pitch Clarinet in A | more ... sounds a minor third lower than written pitch Alto Clarinet in E flat | more ... sounds a major sixth lower than written pitch Bass Clarinet in B flat | more ... sounds one octave below the Clarinet in B flat Contra Alto Clarinet in E flat | more ... sounds one octave below the Alto Clarinet in E flat Contra Bass Clarinet in B flat | more ... sounds one octave below the Bass Clarinet in B flat Clarinet Family | more ... the clarinet has a distinctive timbre, resulting from the shape of the cylindrical bore,

whose characteristics vary between its three main registers: the chalumeau (low), clarion or clarino (middle), and altissimo (high). It has a very wide compass, which is showcased in chamber, orchestral, and wind band writing. The tone quality varies greatly with the musician, the music, the style of clarinet, the reed, and humidity. The German (Oehler) clarinet generally has a darker tone quality than the French (Boehm) system. In contrast, the French clarinet typically has a lighter, brighter tone quality. The differences in instruments and geographical isolation of players in different nations led to the development, from the last part of the eighteenth century on, of several different schools of clarinet playing. The most prominent of these schools were the German/Viennese traditions and the French school, centred around the clarinettists of the Conservatoire National Suprieur de Musique de Paris. Increasingly, through the proliferation of recording technology and the internet, examples of many different styles of clarinet playing are available to developing clarinettists today. This has led to decreased homogeneity of styles of

clarinet playing. The modern clarinetist has an eclectic palette of "acceptable" tone qualities to choose from, especially when working with an open-minded teacher

Saxophones |

Sopranissimo Saxophone in B flat construction difficulties mean that only recently has a true sopranissimo saxophone been produced. Nicknamed the "soprillo," this piccolo-sized saxophone is an octave above the soprano, and its diminutive size necessitates an octave key on the mouthpiece

Sopranino Saxophone in E flat sounds a minor third above written pitch Soprano Saxophone in B flat sounds a major second below written pitch Alto Saxophone in E flat sounds a major sixth below written pitch Tenor Saxophone in B flat sounds a major ninth below written pitch

Baritone Saxophone in E flat

sounds one octave plus a major sixth below written pitch Bass Saxophone in B flat sounds one octave plus a major ninth below written pitch Saxophone Family | more ... the saxophone was originally patented as two families, each of seven instruments. The "orchestral" family consisted of instruments in the keys of C and F, and the "band" family in Eb and Bb. Each family consisted of Sopranino, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Baritone, Bass and Contrabass although some of these were never made (Sax also planned but never made - a subcontra). Of these the orchestral family are now rarely found, and of the band family only the soprano, alto, tenor and baritone are in common use (these form the typical saxophone sections of both military and big bands). The C-melody saxophone, a nontransposing instrument, was popular in the 1920s and could be played from sheet music for guitar and piano. The soprano has regained a degree of popularity over recent decades, and the bass, sopranino and even

contrabass are still manufactured. Sopranino, bass and contrabass are rarely used except in large saxophone ensembles and saxophone orchestras. The wide bore of the saxophone means that the larger saxes are extremely large and heavy, and recently (1999) an alternative contrabass, the "tubax," has been developed with a narrower bore. Although not a true saxophone, its bore leads to a more reasonable size and weight.

Double Reeds |

Oboe | more ... sounds at written pitch the baroque oboe as it was used at the end of the seventeenth century had its origin in such Renaissance instruments as the bombards, the shawms and the pifferi. Originally one of a family of instruments, the soprano oboe was the principal oboe that was still in use at the end of the seventeenth century. As was also the case with practically every other woodwind instrument at that time, its conical bore became narrower and its exterior became increasingly elaborate (cf. the recorder) with decorative mouldings and circlets. It was at first an orchestral instrument, particularly so in France

but it soon went on to establish its own repertory in chamber music and sacred music. The oboe was also very popular in Italy, while J.S. Bach was to make it one of the instruments he used most frequently for obbligato lines in his cantata arias. The two keys are used to overcome a limitation of fingering (for the low C) and to improve the quality of a note in the lower register (for the E flat) Oboe d'amore in A | more ... sounds a minor third below written pitch this is a typically German instrument that dates from the first half of the eighteenth century, it being an oboe in A that sounds a third lower than the normal oboe. It also possesses a bell shaped bulge at its lower end that gives the instrument its characteristically warm timbre. It was mainly used as a solo instrument in chamber music although J.S. Bach also used it as an obbligato instrument in cantata arias. Cor Anglais in F (English Horn) | more ... sounds a perfect fifth lower than written pitch the baroque equivalent of the cor anglais was the alto oboe known in France as the taille de hautbois. It

was first used in the second half of the seventeenth century in the French ensembles known as the bandes de hautbois, in which it played the inner lines of polyphonic compositions. J.S. Bach was also to make use of it when a low pitched oboe was needed to double the viola parts in the cantatas. The oboe da caccia, always referred to by its Italian name, appears frequently in works by J.S. Bach. It is also quite probable that Bach himself caused this particular type of oboe to be built. Several years ago various pieces of an instrument were discovered in the collections of the Copenhagen Instrumental Museum; these were carefully assembled and this enigmatic instrument was the result. It had a double reed, it was bigger than the normal oboe and had a curved body whose separate components were held together by a strip of leather, the whole ending in a metallic bell. What was more, it was noted with great surprise that the instrument had been first made by Eichentopf, the most well-known instrument maker of Leipzig of Bach's time. The puzzle over exactly what type of instrument Bach's oboe da caccia was had finally been solved. The oboe da caccia sounds a fifth lower than

the normal oboe and can thus be linked with the alto oboe in F Heckelphone in C | more ... sounds one octave below written pitch the Heckelphone was a musical instrument invented by Wilhelm Heckel and introduced in the late nineteenth century. It is similar to a oboe but with a wider bore and a deeper sound. Richard Strauss's 1905 opera Salome calls for a Heckelphone Piccolo Heckelphone in F the piccolo Heckelphone is a very rare woodwind instrument. It is a variant of the Heckelphone, that is pitched in F, a fourth above the oboe. It was developed and produced by the Wilhelm Heckel GmbH in Biebrich, Germany Bassoon | more ... sounds at written pitch the precursor of the modern bassoon, the dulcian (meaning soft and sweet in Latin) was invented about 500 years ago. It was built in one piece and had a double reed made from cane. In England the dulcian was called the curtal. In the period 1643 to 1715, French instrument makers

developed a new curtal that had four separate pieces and between 4 and 8 keys. It is remarkably similar to the modern instrument. During the 1700s, more keys were added as the range was extended. The most important change came in 1820 when Carl Almenader and his partner, Adam Heckel, developed a bassoon with a better sound. Their design, the German bassoon, is the model most often used today Contrabassoon sounds one octave below written pitch

Trumpets |

Piccolo Trumpet in A sounds a major sixth above written pitch Trumpet in F sounds a perfect fourth above written pitch Trumpet in E sounds a major third above written pitch Trumpet in E flat sounds a minor third above written pitch Trumpet in D sounds a major second above written pitch Trumpet in C sounds at written pitch Trumpet in B (rare) sounds a minor second below written pitch

Trumpet in B flat (Cornet) sounds a major second below written pitch Trumpet in A sounds a minor third below written pitch Bass Trumpet in E flat sounds a major sixth below written pitch Bass Trumpet in C sounds one octave below written pitch Bass Trumpet in B flat sounds a major ninth below written pitch Trumpet Family | more ... the first trumpets reputedly came from Egypt, and were primarily used for military purposes (Joshua's shofar, blown at the battle of Jericho, came from this tradition) like the bugle as we still know it, with different tunes corresponding to different instructions. In medieval times, trumpet playing was a guarded craft, its instruction occurring only within highly selective guilds. The trumpet players were often among the most heavily guarded members of a troop, as they were relied upon

to relay instructions to other sections of the army. Eventually the trumpet's value for musical production was seen, particularly after the addition of valves around the mid 1830s, and its use and instruction became much more widespread. The Arabic word for trumpet was naffir. The Spanish used the Arabic name al naffir and changed it into anafil, while the French gave the trumpet its own name, buisine, derived from the Latin word buccina


Trombones |

Alto Trombone in E flat sounds at written pitch Tenor Trombone in B flat sounds at written pitch Bass Trombone in B flat sounds at written pitch Trombone Family | more ... until the early eighteenth century, the trombone was called the sackbut in English, a word with various different spellings ranging from sackbut to shagbolt and derived from the Spanish sacabuche or French sacqueboute. This was not a distinct

instrument from the trombone, but rather a different name used for an earlier form. Other countries used the same name throughout the instrument's history, viz. Italian trombone and German Posaune. The sackbut was built in slightly smaller dimensions than modern trombones, and had a bell that was more conical and less flared. Today, sackbut is generally used to refer to the earlier form of the instrument, commonly used in early music ensembles. Sackbuts were (and still are) made in every size from alto to contrabass, though then as now the contrabass is very rare. Older, now obsolete versions of the bass trombone were of smaller bore than the modern bass trombone described above. They were pitched in G (range: Db2-D5, without attachments), F (range: B2-C5), E (Renaissance, Baroque instruments) , E flat (range: A2-Bb5), D (Renaissance, Baroque instruments) or C (Renaissance, Baroque instruments) and had a longer slide and a handle attached to the outer slide stay to allow for full extension of the slide. These

older types of bass trombone were used in Europe and the British Empire [some information taken from: Types of Trombone]


Horns |

French Horn in F | more ... sounds a perfect fifth below written pitch the two terms, Hunting Horn and Trompe de Chasse are both often used for the same instrument. The trompe de chasse first came to prominence at the end of the seventeenth century in France; the French court's behaviour was much imitated at the time and the instrument thus became part of European hunting tradition. The hunting horn came in various sizes, depending on how many concentric circles were formed by the body of the instrument. This instrument that is so characteristic of the hunt and the countryside began to be used in instrumental music at the beginning of the eighteenth century, as can be seen from French and German works of the period, Bach's 1st Brandenburg Concerto being one of the most famous examples. In this work and in many others for the instrument by Bach's contemporaries, the instrument is called the corno da caccia. Like the

trumpet, the horn is limited in its melodic ability because of its reliance on the harmonic series, although a few more notes are nevertheless available; it has the same intonation problems as the trumpet in this respect. This problem was, however, solved during the eighteenth century around 1750 by one Anton Joseph Hampel, who discovered the stopped note technique. This consists of placing the hand into the bell of the horn, thus changing the length of the column of air and thereby correcting the tuning of certain notes and even obtaining several that do not form part of the natural harmonic scale. There is no mention of this technique in any source prior to this date, either in scores, essays, or paintings which could lead us to believe either that the players of Bach's, Handel's and Telemann's works had a special lip technique or that what appear to us today to be intonation faults were then accepted because they were an unavoidable part of the instrument. This being said, it seems that the instrument that was used for "learned" music then began slowly to differ from the hunting horn proper. The shape of the bell changed, its progressive widening

making Hampel's technique possible. A system of crooks was also invented that enabled the instrument to be played in different keys (also sometimes used for the trumpet), these crooks being different lengths of tubing that were inserted between the mouthpiece and the body of the instrument, thereby varying the fundamental pitch of the instrument (C, D, E, F, G etc.) according to their length and allowing the horn to play many different types of music. It was undoubtedly for reasons of balance with other instruments that the horn's timbre softened and darkened in contrast to the brassy and brilliant colour of the trumpet, which had to keep its bright and loud tone for obvious reasons. Flugelhorn in B flat B flat Alto Horn (rare) sounds a major second below written pitch Alto Horn in A sounds a minor third below written pitch French Horn in G sounds a perfect fourth below written pitch French Horn in E sounds a minor sixth below written pitch French Horn in E flat sounds a major sixth below written pitch

French Horn in D sounds a minor seventh below written pitch French Horn in C sounds an octave below written pitch Baritone Horn (Euphonium) Treble Clef sounds a major ninth below written pitch Baritone Horn (Euphonium) Bass Clef sounds at written pitch


Tubas |

B flat Tenor Wagner Tuba sounds a major second below written pitch F Bass Wagner Tuba sounds a perfect fifth below written pitch Tuba | more ... sounds at written pitch tubas are found in various pitches, most commonly in F, Eb, C, or Bb in "brass band" pitching. The main bugle of Bb tubas is approximately 18 feet long, while C tubas are 16 feet, Eb tubas 13 feet, and F tubas 12 feet in tubing length without adding any

valve branches. Tubas are considered to be conical in shape as from their tapered bores, they steadily increase in diameter along their lengths. If the tubing is wrapped for placing the instrument on the player's lap, the instrument is usually called a tuba or concert tuba. It may have a bell pointing forward instead of upward, in which case it is often called a recording tuba because of its popularity in the early days of recorded music. When wrapped to surround the body for marching, it is traditionally known as a helicon. A sousaphone is a helicon with a bell pointed up, or then curved to point forward (really, a recording sousaphone).


Tuned Percussion |

Timpani | more ... sounds at written pitch timpani are musical instruments in the percussion family. A type of drum, they consist of a skin called a head stretched over a large bowl commonly

made of copper. They are played by striking the head with a specialized drum stick called a timpani stick or timpani mallet. Unlike most drums, they produce a definite pitch when struck. Timpani evolved from military drums to become a staple of the classical orchestra in the seventeenth century. Today, they are used in many types of musical ensembles including concert, marching, and even rock bands. Timpani is an Italian plural, the singular of which is timpano. However, this is rarely used in informal English speech as a timpano is typically referred to as a drum, a timpani, or simply a timp. Alternative spellings with y in place of either or both is tympani, tympany, or timpany are occasionally encountered in older English texts. This substitution is taken from the Latin word tympanum, from which the Italian word descends. A musician who plays the timpani is known as a timpanist. While the word timpani has been widely adopted in the English language, some English speakers choose to use the native word kettledrums. The German word for timpani is Pauken, and the

French is timbales Glockenspiel | more ... sounds two octaves above written pitch the Glockenspiel (German, "play of bells", also known as orchestra bells and, in its portable form, bell lira or bell lyre) is a musical instrument in the percussion family. It is similar to the xylophone, in that it has tuned bars laid out in a fashion resembling a piano keyboard. The xylophone's bars are wooden, while the glockenspiel's are metal, thus making it a metallophone. The glockenspiel, moreover, is much smaller and higher in pitch. When used in a marching or military band, the bars are sometimes mounted in a portable case and held vertically. In orchestral use, the bars are mounted horizontally. A pair of hard mallets is generally used to strike the bars, although if laid out horizontally, a keyboard may be attached to the instrument to allow chords to be more easily played. The glockenspiel's range is limited to the upper register, and usually covers about two and a half to three octaves. In sheet music, the notes to

be played by the glockenspiel are written two octaves lower than they will sound when played. When struck, the bars give a very pure, bell-like sound. Xylophone | more ... sounds one octave above written pitch the xylophone (from the Greek meaning 'wooden sound') is a musical instrument in the percussion family which probably originated in Indonesia (Nettl 1956, p.98). It consists of wooden bars of various lengths that are struck by a plastic, wooden, or rubber mallet. Each bar is tuned to a specific pitch of the scale Xylophones are tuned to different scale systems depending on their origin, including pentatonic, heptatonic, diatonic, or chromatic. The arrangement of the bars is generally from low (longer bars) to high (shorter bars). The xylophone has a brighter tone than its cousin the marimba, and the sustaining power of the notes is dependednt upon the material the keys are made of. Modern xylophones include resonating tubes below the bars. A xylophone with a range extending downwards into the marimba range is called

a xylorimba. Vibraphone | more ... sounds at written pitch

Tubular Bells | more ... sounds at written pitch Marimba | more ... sounds at written pitch


Voices |

Soprano sounds at written pitch (see music dictionary for information about different kinds of soprano voice) Mezzo-soprano with a range from A below middle C to F an eleventh above middle C, mezzosopranos generally have a darker (or lower) vocal tone than sopranos, and their vocal range is between that of a soprano and that of an alto. The terms Dugazon and GalliMari are sometimes used to refer to light mezzosopranos, after the names of famous singers. A castrato with a mezzosoprano voice was called a mezzo-soprano castrato Alto (Contralto) sounds at written pitch (see music dictionary for information about different kinds of contralto voice: alto here refers to the lowest female voice)

Castrato a male voice with the same range as a female soprano (see music dictionary for more information) Countertenor a falsetto male voice with the same range as a female alto (contralto) (see music dictionary for more information Tenor sounds one octave below written pitch (see music dictionary for information about different kinds of tenor voice) Baritone sounds at written pitch (see music dictionary for information about different kinds of baritone voice) Bass sounds at written pitch (see music dictionary for information about different kinds of bass voice)


Recorders |

Sopranino in F sounds one octave above written pitch Descant (Soprano) in C sounds one octave above written pitch

Treble (Alto) in F sounds at written pitch Tenor in C sounds at written pitch Bass in F sounds one octave above written pitch Recorder Family | more ... the recorder is a woodwind musical instrument of the family known as fipple flutes or internal duct flutes whistle-like instruments which include the tin whistle and ocarina. The recorder is endblown and the mouth of the instrument is constricted by a wooden plug, known as a block or fipple. It is distinguished from other members of the family by having holes for seven fingers (the lower one or two often doubled to facilitate the production of semitones) and one for the thumb of the uppermost hand. The bore of the recorder is occasionally cylindrical but is usually tapered slightly, being widest at the mouthpiece end.

recorder ranges, clefs and other useful information by Ann Bies


Keyboard Instruments |

Organ | more ... the best known member of this family is the pipe organ, so named because it produces its sound through pipes, although many people simply refer to it as the "organ". Other types include the electronic organ, which does not have pipes, is technically not an organ, and propagates its electronicallyproduced sound through one or more loudspeakers. Mechanical, electropneumatic and electro-mechanical actions exist that allow the organist to play any or all of the stops on an organ, giving him the ability to change not only colour, but also pitch level, at will. The pipe organ is the origin of the terms 8', 16', 32', etc.. Originally referencing the length of a pipe in feet, the terms are now commonplace on synthesizer oscillators, referring to relative pitch levels. 8' stops sound pitches where you would expect when played on the piano. 16' stops play an octave lower, 32' two octaves lower, 4' and 2' stop play one and two octaves higher, respectively, in essence making the pipe organ a transposing instrument, as well. While these pitch level indications are familiar to today's synthesizer users, some stops, generally called mutations, are also made that incorporate pitch levels other than octaves, such as 5 1/3' (5th higher), 3 1/5' (10th higher) or 2 2/3' (12th higher). Most pipe organs these days have at least three manuals (keyboards), though some have only two or as many as four or five (a few even six or seven), and of course they have pedals, as well. Manuals usually comprise 61 keys notated C to c4, while the pedals usually encompass 32 notes, notated C to g1.? Notice I said "notated", because as I mentioned before, you might specify 16' or 4' stops, which would change the pitch that actually sounds. [reference: Organ Tutorial from which most of this extract has been taken] Pianoforte | more ... a piano or pianoforte is a musical instrument classified as a keyboard, percussion, or string instrument, depending on the system of classification used. The piano produces sound by striking steel strings with felt hammers that immediately rebound allowing the string to continue vibrating. These vibrations are transmitted through the bridges to the soundboard, which amplifies them. The piano is widely used in western music for solo performance, chamber music, and accompaniment. It is also very popular as an aid to composing and rehearsal. Although not portable and often expensive, the piano's versatility and ubiquity has made it among the most familiar of musical instruments. The word piano is a shortened form of the word pianoforte, which is seldom used except in formal language and derived from the original Italian name for the instrument, gravicmbalo col piano e forte (literally harpsichord with soft and loud). This refers to the ability of the piano to produce notes at different volumes depending on the amount of force used to press the keys

Harpsichord | more ... a harpsichord is any of a family of European keyboard instruments, including the large instrument currently called a harpsichord, but also the smaller virginals, the muselar virginals and the spinet. All these instruments generate sound by plucking a string rather than striking one, as in a piano or clavichord. The harpsichord family is thought to have originated when a keyboard was affixed to the end of a psaltery, providing a mechanical means to pluck the strings. The type of instrument now usually called a harpsichord in English is generally called a clavicembalo or simply cembalo in Italian, and this last word is generally used in German as well. The typical French word is clavecin. Confusingly, the most commonly used Spanish word for a harpsichord is clavicordio, leading to confusion with the clavichord. Accordingly, in musical circles the Italian or, more commonly, the French word is used by Spanish speakers Clavichord | more ... the clavichord is a European stringed keyboard instrument known from the late Medieval, through the Renaissance, Baroque and Classical eras. Historically, it was widely used as a practice instrument and as an aid to composition. The clavichord produces sound by striking brass or iron strings with small metal blades called tangents. Vibrations are transmitted through the bridge(s) to the soundboard. The name is derived from the Latin word 'clavis', meaning "key" and 'chordis' meaning string Instrument Names in Other Languages :: Key word: instrument names

Instrument Names in Other Languages English musical instruments wind instruments woodwind instruments recorder Italian strumenti musicali German Musikinstrumente French Spanish

instruments de instrumentos musique musicales instruments vent instruments vent en bois flte bec flte douce flte droite flte bec sopranino flte douce sopranino flte droite instrumentos de viento instrumentos de madera flauta recta flauta dulce flauta de pico flauta recta sopranino flauta dulce sopranino flauta de pico

strumenti a fiato Blasinstrumente legni flauto dolce flauto dritto flauto a becco flauto dolce sopranino flauto dritto sopranino flauto a becco Holzblasinstrumente Blockflte

sopranino recorder


sopranino descant recorder (UK) soprano recorder (US) flauto dolce soprano flauto dritto soprano flauto a becco soprano

sopranino flte bec soprano flte douce soprano flte droite soprano

sopranino flauta recta soprano flauta dulce soprano flauta de pico soprano


flauto dolce treble recorder contralto (UK) flauto dritto alto recorder contralto (US) flauto a becco contralto flauto dolce tenore flauto dritto tenore flauto a becco tenore flauto dolce basso flauto dritto basso flauto a becco basso ottavino flauto piccolo


flauta recta contralto (or flte bec alto alto) flte douce flauta dulce alto contralto (or flte droite alto) alto flauta de pico contralto (or alto) flte bec tnor flte douce tnor flte droite tnor flte bec basse flte douce basse flte droite basse petite flte flte piccolo flte flte traversire grande flte flte en sol flte alto flte en ut flte basse hautbois cor anglais flauta recta tenor flauta dulce tenor flauta de pico tenor flauta recta bajo flauta dulce bajo flauta de pico bajo ottavino flautn octavilloflauta piccolo flauta flauta travesera flauta alto flauta contralto flauta bajo oboe corno ingls cuerno ingls corneta inglesa

tenor recorder


bass recorder



kleine Flte Pikkoloflte Piccolo Flte Querflte

flute flauto transverse flute flauto traverso alto flute bass flute oboe English horn (U.S.) cor anglais

flauto contralto Altflte flauto basso oboe corno inglese Bassflte Oboe Englischhorn

(U.K.) oboe d'amore clarinet soprano clarinet alto clarinet basset horn bass clarinet contra or double bass clarinet bassoon contrabassoon Heckelphone Sarrusophone saxophone sopranino saxophone soprano saxophone oboe d'amore clarinetto clarinetto piccolo clarinetto contralto corno di bassetto Liebesoboe Klarinette kleine Klarinette Altklarinette Bassetthorn hautbois d'amour clarinette petite clarinette clarinette alto cor de basset clarinette basse clarinette contrebasse basson contrebasson Heckelphone Sarrusophone saxophone saxophone sopranino saxophone soprano oboe de amor clarinete clarinete soprano clarinete alto cuerno basset trompa de basset clarinete bajo clarinete contrabajo fagot contrafagot Heckelfn Sarrusofn saxofn saxofno saxofno sopranino saxofno soprano

clarinetto basso Bassklarinette clarinetto contrabbasso fagotto contrafagotto Heckelphon Heckelfono Sarrusofono sassofono saxofono sax sassofono sopranino sassofono soprano Kontrabassklarinette Fagott Kontrafagott Heckelfon Sarrusofon Saxophon Sopraninosaxophon Sopransaxophon Altsaxophon Tenorsaxophon Baritonsaxophon

sassofono alto saxophone contralto sassofono alto tenor saxophone baritone saxophone sassofono tenore sassofono baritono

saxophone alto saxofno alto saxophone tnor saxophone baryton saxophone basse saxophone contrebasse saxofno tenor saxofno bartono saxofno bajo saxofno contrabajo saxofno

bass saxophone sassofono basso Basssaxophon contrabass saxophone subcontrabass sassofono contrabbasso sassofono Kontrabasssaxophon

Subkontrabassaxophon saxophone

saxophone brass instruments French horn natural horn hunting horn valve horn trumpet


souscontrebasse Blechblasinstrumente


ottone corno corno francese corno naturale corno da caccia

instruments instrumentos vent de cuivres de viento-metal (or cuivres) cor trompa (de cor d'harmonie pistones) cor franais corno francs cor simple cor de chasse bugle cor pistons cor chromatique trompette cornet cornet pistons (valve cornet) trombone trombone pistons bassetrombone tuba cor des Alpes trompa natural trompeta de caza trompa de pistones trompeta cornetn (corneta = bugle) cornetn de pistones (valve cornet) trombn trombn de pistones trombn bajo tuba trompa de los Alpes instrumentos de percusin tambor tambor timbales

Horn Waldhorn Jagdhorn Signalhorn

corno ventile Ventilhorn corno cromatico tromba cornetta (bugle or cornet) cornetta a pistoni (valve cornet) trombone trombone a pistoni Trompete Kornett Ventilkornett Piston Posaune Ventilposaune


trombone valve trombone bass trombone tuba Alphorn Alpenhorn percussion instruments drum side drum kettle drums timpani snare drum

trombone basso Bass Posaune tuba Tuba

corno delle Alpi Alphorn batteria strumenti a percussione tamburo tamburo timpani

Schlaginstrument instruments Perkussionsinstrument percussion Trommel kleine Trommel Pauken kleine Trommel Rhrtrommel Marschtrommel Schnarrtrommel tambour tambour timbales

cassa chiara

caisse claire

caja clara

piccolo snare drum military snare drum tenor drum

tamburo piccolo Tarole tarole tamburo militare cassa rullante tamburino tamburo rullante Militrtrommel Rhrtrommel Wirbeltrommel Tenortrommel

tambour petit tambour militaire

tarol tambor militar

caisse roulante caja rodante tambourin caja redoblante

bass drum Turkish drum cymbals antique cymbals crotales castanets triangle tambourine glockenspiel orchestra bells chimes (US) bell lira (portable) bell lyre (portable) xylophone vibraphone mouth organ harmonica celesta celeste rattle tubular bells chimes (US) bell plates plate bells

tamburo grande tamburo grosso Grosse Trommel gran cassa piatti crotali castagnette triangolo musicale tamburello Becken crotales cymbales antiques Kastagnetten Triangel Tamburin

grosse caisse cymbales Antike Zimbeln castagnettes triangle tambourin glockenspiel jeu de timbres (jeu de clochettes = clarion) xylophone vibraphone harmonica clesta crcelle cloches tubolaires cloches clochesplaques

bombo cimbalos crotalos platillos antiguos castauelas tringulo pandereta juego de timbres rgano de campanas liro (portable) xilfono xilfon vibrfono armnica de boca celesta carraca matraca campanas tubulares campanas platillos

glockenspiel metallofono campanelli

Glockenspiel Lyra (portable)

xilifono vibrafono armonica a bocca celesta raganella campane tubolari campane

Xylophon Vibraphon Mundharmonika Celesta Ratsche Knarre Schnarre Rohrenglocke Glocken

campane in Plattenglocken lastra di metallo

cloches en lame de mtal Turkish crescent Turkish jingle Chinese pavilion Jingling Johnny Mohamed's Banner anvil marimba string instruments strings harp guitar violin viola violoncello cello double bass band orchestra chamber orchestra mezzaluna crescent turkisch crescent Schellenbaum albero di trkischer Halbmondsonagli Stern cappello cinese padiglione cinese cappello turco incudine marimba strumenti archi archi arpa chitarra violino viola violoncello contrabasso Amboss Ambo Marimbaphon Saiteninstrument Streicher Harfe Gitarre Violine Bratsche Violoncello Kontrabass

chapeau chinois pavillon chinois

pabelln chino pabelln turco

enclume marimba instruments cordes cordes harpe guitare violon alto violoncelle contrebasse

yunque marimba instrumentos de cuerda cuerdas arpa guitarra violn viola violonchelo (preferred) cello violoncelo contrabajo

orchestra di Blasorchester strumenti a fiato orchestra orchestra da camera Orchester Kammerorchester

orchestre orquesta de d'instruments vientos vent orchestre orchestre de chambre orchestre cordes orquesta orquesta de cmara orquesta de cuerdas

string orchestra orchestra d'archi Streichorchester