Top 10 Easiest Instruments You Can Learn (2023 Guide) (2023)

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We’ve all heard someone shred the guitar or play a beautiful melody on the piano and if you’ve ever picked up a violin with no experience, you’ve probably wondered how on earth they can make such incredible music. It takes a lot of practice to learn an instrument, but some are easier than others.

Listed below are the 10 easiest instruments to learn (and we’re not talking about the triangle or maracas) so you can step into the world of making music, without the frustration of mastering the trumpet.

From strings to percussion and everything in between, there’s an instrument out there for everyone.

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(Video) Top 10 Hardest Instruments to Learn

1. Ukulele

The ukulele may be an adorable instrument you associate with children and Hawaii, but don’t be fooled, the ukulele can create beautiful music and is played by many renowned musicians all around the world.

The ukulele is essentially a small guitar. Having only four strings and a smaller fretboard, learning and maneuvering chords will take a lot less effort than its larger counterpart the guitar.

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Teaching yourself the ukulele is also a very affordable task. A decent ukulele will cost you around $100 (or less!) and can be completely self-taught. There is an abundance of tutorials online, from fingerpicking to simple chords. Dedicating half an hour a day to your ukulele practice will have you playing like a pro in no time.

We guarantee you’ll be able to play twinkle twinkle little star by the end of your first day messing around on your ukulele, and you’ll only advance from here.

A plus to learning the ukulele is that your newfound skills will transpire to harder instruments such as the guitar, so if you’ve mastered the ukulele and are ready to tackle something a little tricker, you’ve already got a head start.

2. Keyboard

Yes, we know what you’re thinking. The piano/keyboard isn’t easy. Coordinating both hands and creating masterpieces like Beethoven, that takes years of practise?!

While yes, this is true, the keyboard can still be played by many people with little practice. Coordinating both hands is a tricky task, but you can create incredible music by pressing singular keys and simple chords.

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Similar to the ukulele, you can purchase a keyboard for an affordable price, and the bonus of the keyboard is many have the ability to plug in headphones, so only you are able to hear your progress, (so if it takes 100 times to get the chord right, no one else will know or hear!)

While learning and switching chords may take a little longer to learn, you’ll be able to key out ‘Happy Birthday’ with no real effort whatsoever.

While you may not become Beethoven overnight the keyboard is great for your coordination and can be learnt by anyone who’s willing to dedicate some time to learn such a beautiful instrument.

Another bonus about the keyboard is it is nowhere near as large as a piano, yet still gives off the same sound effect and will give you all the skills needed to one day upgrade to a piano.

(Video) The Best Beginner Keyboard For 2023

3. Recorder

This instrument is taught in primary schools for a reason. It’s simple and can be played by anyone, but many children take this up from a young age.

While many may associate the recorder as a child’s instrument, it is most definitely not. The recorder is the greatest instrument gateway into more breath controlled instruments.

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Playing the recorder doesn’t take much breath work and if this can be mastered, moving onto more intense woodwind instruments will be more simple after knowing the basics of the recorder. If you have dreams of playing the saxophone, don’t put the recorder to the back of your mind too soon, it may just help you.

You’ll be able to pick up a recorder and play something nice in no time, as you learn what sounds is created by what holes are being covered by your fingers.

The recorder has been listed as one of the easiest instruments to learn, hence why they have so many young children take it up in school as they can begin their musical journeys.

4. Drums

If you can hold a beat, you can play the drum kit. If you can’t hold a beat., you can learn! The drum kit takes more coordination than the other instruments mentioned as you’re generally working two hands and a foot at once, but as soon as you have that first simple drum beat down, you’ll quickly progress with your drumming skills, the good thing about the drums is it is repetitive.

You only need to learn one beat and it’ll sound great being played over and over again. Although, we would recommend learning more than one as you may just drive your neighbours insane if you don’t.

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A beginner drum kit will be a lot less intimidating than those you see when you’re watching your favourite bands live. All you need is a bass drum, a snare, some tom-toms and a high hat and you’re ready to make music magic.

If drums are too loud for where you live, you’re able to get covers to place over the drum skins to make the drums quieter, or you could consider purchasing an electric drumkit where you can choose the volume you want to play (or wear headphones and drum all night long without a worry in the world about waking up your neighbours).

5. Bass guitar

The bass is a similar size to a regular guitar, but it only has four strings, immediately making it more simple to learn than the guitar.

Another bonus of the bass compared to the guitar is the bass doesn’t tend to involve many chords, it is more single notes, making it much more simple for a beginner to learn and memorise than trying to switch chords correctly. You can choose to play the bass with either your fingers or a pick, depending on which you prefer.

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Be aware though that the bass consists of much thicker strings than the guitar, so it will take more physical effort to press down and pluck the strings.

While it may not be much, you’ll probably notice it when you first start playing with a blister or two or some sore fingers. This will pass the more you play and your fingers grow stronger.


6. The Lyre Harp

The lyre harp is smaller than the regular harp and has nowhere near as many strings. The lyre harp generally only has 7-10 strings as well as being small and portable (a lot less daunting than a regular harp!).

Playing the harp consists of a lot of plucking, so while you may not need to remember chords you will need fast-moving fingers to keep the magical sound flowing.

The harp creates a beautiful, tender sound and will be soothing to anyone who chooses to listen. While many people have a guitar sitting in their home, not many have a lyre harp, giving you the opportunity to play for friends and family as they listen to the beauty of your harp.

7. Tambourine

Don’t be fooled by the tambourine, despite being something you hold with one hand and hit with the other, it takes a lot of coordination to get sounding good. Moving your hand at the right speed to get the metal jingles sounding how you want them to as well as hitting the skin of the tambourine to create that percussion sound is going to take some practice to master.

While the act of playing the tambourine is simple and easy to learn, staying in rhythm is a little more tricky. If you fall a second behind or shake one too many times, it will mess up the beat.

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The tambourine comes in different forms, some have skin that you can also hit while others are just the metal jingles that are shaken with precision. Both require the same level of learning involved, so which you choose to play is up to you.

8. The guitar

Now I know we’ve mentioned the guitar as being tricker than other instruments (such as the ukulele and the bass) but it can also be simple to learn. While you’re not going to be a guitar wizard overnight you can learn some musical tricks so you can impress whenever you pick up a guitar.

The guitar can be played in a picking motion similar to the bass or you can learn basic chords. While the guitar is going to take quite a while to master, you should be able to pick up some basic skills with a few online tutorials and not too much effort. Chances are you’ll be able to play the intro to ‘smoke on the water’ within a matter of days.

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The guitar is a universally loved instrument, and there is an abundance of videos online teaching you exactly how to play. It wouldn’t take much searching to find a teacher in your area if you learn better this way.

You also have the choice between acoustic and electric guitars. We would recommend an acoustic guitar for beginners as the sound travels nicer on its own than an electric guitar Although if you’re looking to turn up the volume, the electric guitar may be for you.

9. The harmonica

Chances are if you pick up a harmonica and blow into it, it will sound decent. You don’t need much skill to make this instrument do its thing, but knowing the right way to move your breath and your hands will definitely help you wow your friends and family.

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One of the pros of the harmonica is its size. It’s small enough to fit in your pocket, unlike a keyboard or a drum kit travelling with your harmonica is not going to be a challenge at all.

Wind instruments always bring about a different type of tricky than a hand played instrument, as you need to have your breathing under control, and needing to yawn halfway through playing might sound a little weird coming out of your harmonica!

10. The Bongos

The bongos are the drums but simplified further. Consisting of two drum heads of different sizes (to create different sounds) they’re hit with the hands to create a beat.

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If you can play a simple beat or find yourself tapping your pen at your desk you’ll be able to hit out a rhythm on the bongo drums. Bongo drums are also incredibly accessible, it won’t take you long to find some to buy to take home and start practising.

If you’re interested in percussion, the bongo drums are a great place to start as you build up your rhythm.

There is a wide variety of instruments out there, and something to suit everyone. Whether you choose to play a string instrument with your hands, a woodwind instrument with your breath or pick up a pair of sticks and create a delicious beat, there’s something in this list for you. Pick what stands out to you. and get practising. Everyone is capable of creating music, no matter your skill level.

Most instruments are able to learn to be played, although there is a big difference between being able to play basic chords on a guitar and shredding out a 20-minute solo.

If you’re dedicated enough you’ll be able to pick up an instrument and learn the basics, which may eventually turn into great skills.

While the 10 above mentioned instruments will have you feeling gratification sooner as the basics are easy to learn, if you choose to pick up a cello, enough hard work and dedication will have you playing beautifully.

Thankfully we live in an internet heavy world where we have access to everything. Whether you’re after free tutorials on YouTube or looking to book the best teacher in your town, find the way that helps you learn best.

Learning an instrument is a great hobby to have as it challenges your coordination and memory, all while getting to enjoy the sounds you’re creating.


What is the most easiest instrument to learn? ›

If you're looking for an easy instrument to learn, any of these options fit the bill:
  • HARMONICA. One of the easiest instruments you can take up, which is also very popular in a variety of styles, is the harmonica. ...
  • GUITAR. ...
  • UKULELE. ...
  • KEYBOARD. ...
  • DRUMS.
Oct 19, 2021

What instrument should a 13 year old learn? ›

Recommended Instruments: Piano and Drums are the most common choices for this age range, as children tend to flourish best when they do not have to lift or hold an instrument at first. We do not recommend ukulele*, guitar or brass/woodwind (school band) or larger string instruments yet for this reason.

What is the easiest instrument to learn for a 13 year old? ›

The guitar is by far the easiest and coolest musical instrument for kids. In addition to being fun to play, it is also an ideal musical instrument for learning the basics of music.

What is the top 10 easiest instrument to play? ›

Top 10 Easiest Instruments for Beginners!
  • Triangle.
  • Xylophone.
  • Harmonica.
  • Bongo Drum.
  • Ukulele.
  • Violin.
  • Flute.
  • Clarinet.
Apr 13, 2022

Which instrument is best for girls? ›

Straddling the legs around a cello was considered immoral; sitting by the piano was more becoming for a lady. Thus, women became important for the development of piano composition and play.

Can a 2 year old learn an instrument? ›

Toddlers and Preschoolers

Starting as young as 3, children can begin learning about instruments. The key with this age is keeping it fun!

Can a 2 year old learn music? ›

Two-year-olds love music!! Musical activities are perfect at this age for teaching turn-taking, responsibilities, rhythm and gross motor control. With a whole range of options, your two-year-old will have plenty of musical activities to keep them busy this week!

What is the best instrument for a 11 year old? ›

Top 10 Instruments for Children to Learn to Play Music
  • Piano.
  • Ukulele.
  • Drums.
  • Recorder.
  • Violin.
  • Guitar.
  • Flute.
  • Trumpet.
Mar 11, 2020

What instrument is best for 9 year old? ›

10 Of The Best Musical Instruments For Children To Learn
  • 1Piano/Keyboard. ...
  • 2Guitar. ...
  • 3Bass Guitar. ...
  • 4Ukulele. ...
  • 5The Drums. ...
  • 7Saxophone. ...
  • 8Cajon Drum and other hand drums. ...
  • 9Violin.

What instrument can I learn at 50? ›

The Piano

One of the simplest musical instruments that seniors can easily learn is the classical piano. An instrument that requires practice as well as hand-eye co-ordination is the ideal choice for individuals above the age of 50.

What instrument is harder to play? ›

It is not hard to see why the violin is considered the most difficult instrument to play. Just like the French horn, the violin doesn't sport keys or frets that helps you to play the instrument. This is the reason it takes several years to learn how to play the violin in tune.

What is the most forgotten instrument? ›

Fading Echoes: Forgotten Musical Instruments
  1. Hurdy Gurdy. This six-stringed instrument was at the height of its popularity in Europe during the Renaissance times. ...
  2. Kartal. This instrument is literally two wooden block that are struck to make noise. ...
  3. Kinnera. ...
  4. Lyre. ...
  5. Panpipes.

Which is harder violin or flute? ›

Although flute is a better and easier option than a violin to learn, you must follow your passion. You can choose any instrument to play but your interest is something that will make the journey easier.

What is the rarest instrument to play? ›

The hydraulophone is one of the rarest musical instruments in the world. This instrument is a sensory device that is primarily designed for low vision musicians. This tonal acoustic instrument is played by direct contact with water or other fluids.

What is the deepest instrument? ›

Have you ever heard of classical music's lowest (and rarest) string instrument? It's called the octobass (a.k.a. octobasse) and was built in 1850 by French instrument maker Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume. It is tuned two octaves below a cello and stands a 12-feet tall.

What is the most badass instrument? ›

The 5 Most Badass Musical Instruments Ever Built
  • 5 The Great Stalacpipe Organ. 'Lithophone' is the fancy music term for 'thing that hits rocks with sticks. ...
  • 4 The Nano Guitar. ...
  • 3 Lego Harpsichord. ...
  • 2 The Laser Harp. ...
  • 1 The Zeusaphone.
Jan 13, 2011

What is the most fun instrument? ›

The guitar is often considered to be the "coolest" musical instrument to learn. There are plenty of options available too: from electric to acoustic, classical to bass, all provide different sounds and styles.

What is the cheapest instrument to learn? ›

8 cheap & easy instruments to learn for beginners
  • Acoustic guitar. Not only are acoustic guitars much easier to master than electric guitars, but they're also the cheaper option to buy as far as guitars go. ...
  • Ukulele. ...
  • Keyboard. ...
  • Recorder. ...
  • Harmonica. ...
  • Electronic drums. ...
  • Auxiliary percussion. ...
  • Your voice.
Aug 4, 2022

What is the happiest instrument? ›

With its four string tuning and small size, the ukulele is an enjoyable instrument for beginners to learn. We'll explore instrument care and musical terminology, and learn playing techniques including melody lines, chords and fingerpicking.

Which instrument is best for brain? ›

Musical instruments are a perfect example. In general, keeping your brain active is hugely helpful in the fight against dementia.
Here are our top 5:
  • Piano. The piano is one of the most popular musical instruments that people often try to master. ...
  • Guitar. ...
  • Ukulele. ...
  • Harmonica. ...
  • Drums.
Dec 14, 2022

What instrument should my 7 year old play? ›

Depending on their age, however, some instruments may be better to start with than others. Generally speaking, the piano and drums are the best instruments for younger kids to start learning first. These instruments don't have to be held and can teach young musicians basic skills like chords, musicality, and rhythm.

What age is Grade 1 violin? ›

Approximate minimum standard expected for pupils joining teddingtonviolin: Ages 7-8: Initial - Grade 1. Ages 8- 9 Grade 2-3, Ages 9-11: Grades 3-5, Ages 11+ Grade 5 or higher, merit or distinction level.

What age is too late to start an instrument? ›

Of course, if you are older than 9, you can still learn to play an instrument. Teenagers and adults who attend music lessons experience many of the same benefits as younger children. It's never too late to learn.

Is violin or cello harder? ›

Is it easier to learn violin or cello? The cello might be slightly easier to learn, due to its repertoire and more natural holding position. However, both instruments have similar difficulties in technique and sound production, and neither have frets.

At what age can a child sing? ›

By 12 months they can spontaneously sing short phrases as they slide around between different pitches, and by 12 to 15 months they may imitate the melodic contour of songs sung to them by their parents (Papoušek 1996).

Can a 2 year old sing ABC? ›

By age 2: Kids start recognizing some letters and can sing or say aloud the “ABC” song. They can also start to identify letters in their own name. By age 3: Kids may recognize about half the letters in the alphabet and start to connect letters to their sounds. (Like s makes the /s/ sound.)

Can 3 year olds sing? ›

2- and 3-year-olds will begin to create music with some accuracy without live or recorded musical support. You may observe your toddler exhibiting new behaviors such as: Singing short phrases of a song in tune, with the remaining notes not in tune.

Can a 4 year old play piano? ›

Each Child is Different

The first thing to know about piano lesson age is that every child is different. Some children are able to start at age four or younger, while others need to wait until age seven or eight. Some have started as late as their teen years and found great success in piano.

Is 50 too old to learn an instrument? ›

Older adults still have the ability to learn, so don't feel you need to give up on this. Older adults actually benefit from taking on more hobbies and extracurriculars to keep the brain active and stimulated, so picking up a new instrument is a perfect way to do just that.

What is the best solo instrument? ›

The piano reigns supreme as the ultimate solo instrument. It has 88 keys as well as the ability to play complete orchestrations. It's pretty obvious that the piano is the king of solo repertoire – it's not even close!

What age is it best to play an instrument? ›

The ages 4-7 are usually the most ideal for starting to learn an instrument. Not only are kids' hands and minds functional enough to play, but they can actually begin to understand the basics of music.

What is the most popular school instrument? ›

The 7 Most Popular Musical Instruments that Students Learn
  1. Guitars. As the most popular musical instrument, the guitar has attracted the teenage generation as well as adults too. ...
  2. Drums. It is a well-known fact that playing drums is one of the best ways to get rid of stress. ...
  3. Piano. ...
  4. Violin. ...
  5. Saxophone. ...
  6. Cello. ...
  7. Trumpet.

Is it easier to learn piano or guitar? ›

For a beginner, it is easier to learn and memorize the notes on a piano because they repeat in the same pattern across all the keys. To make things even easier, most piano teachers will start off with teaching only the white keys for adults (a total of 7), or all black keys for kids (a total of 5).

What is the least hardest instrument to play? ›

One reason the recorder is regarded as one of the easiest instruments to learn is because of its simplicity. Unlike many other instruments, the recorder requires less practice time.

What is the funnest instrument to learn? ›

Top Ten Most Fun Instruments to Play
  1. 1 Guitar. ...
  2. 2 Piano The piano is a musical instrument played using a keyboard, which is a row of keys that the performer presses down or strikes with the fingers and thumbs of both hands. ...
  3. 3 Drums. ...
  4. 4 Saxophone The saxophone is a family of woodwind instruments. ...
  5. 5 Clarinet.


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