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What's a Trumpet?

The trumpet is the highest-pitched instrument in the brass section. It is also one of the oldest instruments, with examples dating back to 1500BC.

How to Play

Trumpets are played by blowing air through almost-closed lips, to produce a "buzzing" sound. Say the letter M and keep your lips in the closed position. Blow through this position to make the buzzing sound. After assembling the trumpet, inhale through your mouth, assume the proper lip position, put the instrument up to your lips, and vibrate using your lips, making the buzzing sound. You should feel your lips change tightness as they lock into a note. After playing your first note, try tightening your lips slightly and pushing down the valves.


The standard trumpet range extends from the written F♯ immediately below Middle C up to about three octaves higher.

Did you know?

  1. Despite its relatively small size, the average trumpet can have up to 6 1/2 feet of tubing. This makes the hand held trumpet taller than the average human!

  2. Trumpets are actually 3500 years old! Trumpet like instruments date back to at least 1500 BC, with trumpets found in Tutankhamun's burial chamber in Eygypt. Artwork depictions of trumpets have been dated back to 300 BC.

  3. Early trumpets did not have valves and keys. These were actually not added until around 1820.

Famous People who played
the trumpet:

  • James Wood (Actor)

  • John Glenn (Astronaut and U.S. Senator)

  • Michael Anthony (Bass player for Van Halen)

  • Drew Carey (actor/comedian)

  • Stephen Tyler (lead singer for Aerosmith)

  • Prince Charles (future King of England)

  • Montel Williams (talk show host)

  • Richard Gere (actor)

  • Shania Twain (singer)

  • Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

  • Jackie Gleason (actor)

  • Samuel L. Jackson (Actor- Mace Windu from Star Wars I, II, III and Nick Fury from the Avengers)


Where it's okay to toot your own horn...

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