If you are of the opinion that the brass instrument family got its name because they are made out of brass material then you are absolutely correct. One thing about the brass instrument family is the fact that they are known to sound louder than several other instruments played in an orchestra, and this makes it easy for you hear them from far away. This post on the brass instrument list will talk to you about top instrument that makes up this unique family.
Back in the days, the tools that first made up the brass family were designed using shells, animal horns, tusks, or wood, but modern day instrument are designed using brass material. A common feature of brass instruments is the fact that they are designed to have long pipes, and these pipes are known to have a wide end. This wide end is similar to that of a bell-shape, and the pipes are designed to twisted and curved into different shapes.
Curving and twisting the pipes to have different shapes is the reason why brass instruments will be very easy to hold, and the brass instruments are known to produce sound using breath just like the instruments that makes up the woodwind family. In the case of brass instruments, players do not blow air into a reed, but they make use of their lips in making a vibration against a metal cup-shaped mouthpiece.
Amplifying of the buzzing lips which in turn produces a sound is what this metal cup-shaped mouthpiece is designed to do, and there are several brass instruments that comes with valves attached to their long pipes. These valves are designed to look like buttons, and opening and closing different parts of the pipes is what is going to happen when you hold down the valve. Buzzing the lips softer and harder, and pressing different valves changes sound and pitch.
There are so many brass instruments that are always being used for orchestras, and some of these instruments include tuba, trombone, and the french horn. A piece of information we want to give out to our readers is that so many genres of music like orchestra music and jazz will be very impossible to create if there are no brass instruments. There are so many famous instrumentalists today that made use of brass instruments extensively.
Another name you can call brass instruments are labrosones, and a lip-vibrated instrument is what Labrosone means. This means that they have the ability to create sound using the vibration and amplification of the lips, while the presence of a tubular regulator makes their material, sound, and size unique.
There are several critics and scholars that have ended up describing brass instrument by the sound they make and not the material used in designing them. Interestingly, there are several other brass instruments that are designed using fiberglass materials, while there are some woodwind instruments that are designed using brass materials. We are talking about woodwind instruments like the saxophone and the flute.
Brass Instrument List
How Sounds Are Produced When Playing Brass Instruments
Another thing you have to know about brass instruments is the fact that they are limited to brass materials alone when making them, and they were first designed out of horns like we stated earlier in this post. Producing sounds through the vibration of lips is how sounds are produced when playing brass instruments, while it boasts of valves and tubes that serves the function of a modifier and amplifier.
Having a distinct pitch, brass instruments are designed to come in various shapes and sizes. You can only play a brass instrument perfectly well depending on your embouchure. This means the combination of the airflow and muscle and lips tension in forming a harmonic series.
Now that we have shed more light on what brass instruments are and what they are made of, come with us as we talk about some of the top quality instruments that make up the brass instrument list. Without wasting further time, let us take a look at them one after the other starting with the trumpet.
The people who first founded the trumpet were first part of the human culture, and you know for a fact that instruments manufactured back in the days were made out of materials like metal, wood, horn, animal shells, and several other ancient materials. One of the uses of the trumpet all through history is they were used as sounding alarms, spicing up parade music, calling for war, and finally for gathering a large crowd together.
Similar to the violin, the trumpet is also the smallest instrument of the brass instrument family, and it is known for playing a high sound and pitch. Modern trumpet nowadays are designed to have slim brass pipes with about three valves attached to it. An orchestra is made up of about 2 to 4 trumpets, used in playing harmony, melody, and providing support for the music.
The french horn is different from the English Horn in the sense that the french horn is originally from France, but the English horn isn’t English. The French Horn was first designed out of the french hunting horn, and it is known to produce variety of sounds. It can play sounds that are very loud to sounds that are very soft, smooth, mellow, and harsh sounds are what the French Horn will provide its players with.
An orchestra has about 2 to 8 french horns in it, and they are known to produce harmony and melody as well. The three valves on the French Horn is played by the left hand, why changing the sound you want is done by placing your right hand on the bell.
The Trombone is one of the most unique instruments that make up the brass instrument list, and this is based on the fact that only the Trombone comes with a slide for changing pitch instead of valves. Standard trombones are designed using long and thin brass pipes, while its double U-shaped pipes are designed to meet at the end to form an S. Stretching out the trombone will show you it is about 9-feet long, and an orchestra usually has 3 trombones.
The role of the 3 trombones in an orchestra is for playing Harmony together.
Regarded as the grandfather of the brass family, the Tuba is the lowest and largest member of the brass instrument list. Being able to provide an orchestra with rich and deep sounds is what the Tuba offers, and it varies in size as it stretches from about 9 to 18 feet long. They sound lower as they get longer, and there is only one Tuba that is used in an orchestra.
It is also used for playing harmony in an orchestra, but playing the tuba requires a lot of breath to produce a sound.
Wrapping It Up
Contrary to what everybody believes, the making of brass instrument is limited to the use of brass materials alone, and we have been able to prove this in this post. The vibration of lips is what produces sound when playing the brass instrument, as it causes vibration to take place due to the air inside of the instrument. You will obtain a clearer pitch thanks to its modifiers and amplifiers.
What made the brass instrument more popular was based on the fact that it was used for political activity and calming down riots during the industrial revolution back in the days, and it also provided employers with something to do when they weren’t working.