A membranophone is any musical instrument which produces sound primarily by way of a vibrating stretched membrane. It is one of the four main divisions of instruments in the original Hornbostel-Sachs scheme of musical instrument classification.

Most membranophones are drums. Hornbostel-Sachs divides drums into three main types:

a] struck drums

b] skin is struck with ones hands, a stick / beater or something else.

c] string drums, where a knotted string attached to the drum’s skin is pulled, passing its vibrations onto the skin; and friction drums, where some sort of rubbing motion causes the skin to vibrate (a common type has a stick passing through a hole in the skin which is pulled back and forth).

d] In addition to drums, there is another kind of membranophone, called the singing membranophone, of which the best known type is the kazoo. These instruments modify a sound produced by something else, commonly the human voice, by having a skin vibrate with it.

21: by hitting the drumskin with a hand or object (most common form, including the timpani and snare drum).

22: by pulling a knotted string attached to the drumskin (common in Indian drums, and can be considered an example of a chordophone as well)

23: by rubbing the drumskin with a hand or object (common in Irish traditional music, an example is the bodhran)

24: by modifying sounds through a vibrating membrane (unusual form, including the kazoo).