The Brass Family
Brass instruments are a family of musical instruments under the general category of wind instruments. What differentiates these instruments from other wind instruments is the way in which they produce their sound. In general, all brass instruments produce sound by sympathetic vibrations of air through a resonant tube . Most brass instruments are constructed with brass, but various instruments are made up of other metals. The following brass instruments are offered:
The trumpet is the highest member of the brass family and produces a bright, clear sound. It is played by vibrating into a small mouthpiece and has three valves.
The French horn is also a brass instrument that is played by the use of a small mouthpiece similar to the trumpet. Students with a good musical ear should consider playing the French horn.
Like the French horn, trombone players need a good musical ear. Like the other brass instruments, sound is produced by vibrating into a mouthpiece; however, the trombone has a single long slide instead of valves. The slide is not marked with notches, so players must rely on their ears for correct positioning.
The euphonium (you-PHONE-knee-yum) is sometimes known as the baritone. It is a member of the brass family and looks like a small version of a tuba. Its sound is similar to that of a trombone, but it uses valves like a trumpet instead of a slide (like trombone).
The tuba is the most important instrument in the band. Being the lowest of all the wind instrument, it provides the foundation for the entire band sound. Beginners start on a 3/4 size tuba that is easy to handle.