Instruments to Learn


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Cal Muehler


Learning an instrument has been proven to help with people’s social life, confidence, patience, memory, and time management which many people, especially in junior high and high school, struggle with. When people pick up an instrument and start learning, they have many places to find help and interact with fellow musicians which can build social and music skills. There are many instruments of all sorts of shapes and sizes that people can learn and even make careers for themselves from.


The Drums 

The drums are one of the most popular instruments that can play anything ranging from heavy metal, rock, and punk all the way to jazz, blues, and pop. Although drums are expensive with costs going from 400 dollars to 1,000+, this instrument is the backbone of any band along with the bass, a four stringed instrument much like the guitar. The drums is one of the best instruments for anyone with high energy and wants to get it out by playing this physically demanding instrument. One of the best things about the drums is the lack of necessity to understand music theory, the practice and possibilities of music.


No matter how good an instrument may be, there will always be obvious cons and the drums are no stranger to that. If you’re looking to go around and play venues, transporting your own drums will be a hassle with transporting the parts and setting them up. There’s also the need to understand rhythm, a key for any drummer, especially as the instrument keeping any song together. Finally with the worst con for any drummer, the cost. Drums aren’t a cheap instrument and there’s no doubt about it with some drums going for over 5,000 dollars. 


Electric & Acoustic Guitar

The guitar is one of the most well known instruments and has been ever since the 18th century. Much like drums, guitars can come in all different shapes and sizes with some being flashy and eye-catching like Eddie Van Halen’s iconic guitar, Frankenstrat, while some are normal and plain like the regular acoustic guitar. There’s no limit on what someone can do on a guitar from playing any genre they wish on this flexible instrument. Guitars have been the most popular instrument in music for years and have been seen in almost every genre of music. With different parts of the guitar such as the pickups, frets, strings, and other additions someone could add to it, there’s always something to do on the guitar. 


For the pros of the guitar, it’s not a very costly instrument when sold by itself and many could find a fairly okay guitar for almost 200 dollars. Guitars aren’t extremely heavy like drums can be and are far easier transported from place to place than many instruments. Along with transporting them, guitars don’t require a lot to set up and only take a couple of minutes to get it ready for playing. Lastly for the pros, the guitar can be changed multiple times and can have added parts to it to help get the desired sound.

Starting off the cons, many guitars are fragile and could break a whole piece off by someone dropping it along with being easily scratched and stained. With the many ways for a guitar to break or get damaged, some of it is inevitable and will require some sort of repair such as a string breaking. Guitars aren’t high maintenance but do need to be cleaned and their strings cleaned to keep them at their best performance. Lastly, guitars usually come separately from most of the gear that is suggested for them such as guitar picks, tuners, cases, and amplifiers, expenses can quickly build, amplifiers and pedals are fairly expensive but can be the best thing for desired sound.


The Bass

The bass is much like a guitar but bigger, heavier, and deeper sounding. With its four strings, many argue that the bass is easier but it actually holds an important role in any situation. The bass is the most important instrument along with the drums. Holding the rhythm and supporting the rest, it bridges the gap between the drums and the rest of the instruments, the bass is sometimes said to be the heartbeat in music. The bass has been around since the early 1950s and began its rise in popularity soon after. Having a deeper sound than other instruments at its time, it became popular in both the jazz and the rock genres and is still used in those and many others. Bass is one of the most popular instruments when it comes to learning music and is often high in demand for bands, making landing a spot in one almost inevitable. 


Although basses may not be flashy, attention pulling instruments, the bass is still a great instrument, especially for anyone starting to get into music.


The bass isn’t a very pricey instrument alone and a bass can cost 130 – 400 dollars although, much like guitars, costs can build up with equipment. It teaches the importance of rhythm and structure which is an absolute necessity in music. Lastly, with keeping rhythm, the bassist needs to stretch and move their fingers along the fretboard and the strings which can build strength in the fingers. For all the cons, the bass is usually 7-9 pounds and some can be heavier which can make carrying it around, especially with a strap, a piece of equipment in instruments like bass & guitar which is used to hold the instrument around the player’s shoulder.


Overall, all of these instruments are great for anyone wishing to learn music and start playing either as a hobby or turn it into a job. There are over 1,500 instruments all over the world and many chances to find one to start learning. When asked if he knew how to play an instrument, Reese Houston said, “Yes, I know how to play electric guitar.’’ Out of all the instruments listed, Olivia Lanelli said, ‘’I would learn drums.’’