Aerophones are one of the four main classes of instruments in the original Hornbostel–Sachs system of musical instrument classification. The first class [41] includes instruments when played, do not contain the vibrating air.

For example the bull roarer would fall into this category. Bull-roarers are called “free aerophones” due to the lack of a body containing the air to create the sound.

This class includes [412.13] free reed instruments, such as the bawu, hulusi, sheng, harmonica, concertina, accordions, harmoniums. The second class [42] includes instruments which contain the vibrating air when being played.

The term aerophone is broad in this definition as it denotes classifying musical instruments that are sounded by a breath of air, including the didgeridoo [423], brass instruments [e.g., trumpet, french horn, baritone horn, tuba, trombone] and [421 & 422] woodwind instruments [e.g., oboe, flute, saxophone, clarinet].

A free reed aerophone is a musical instrument that produces sound as air flows past a vibrating reed in a frame. Air pressure is typically generated by breath or with a bellows. Hornbostel–Sachs number: 412.13 a member of interruptive free aerophones.

Free reed instruments are contrasted with non-free or enclosed reed instruments, where the timbre is fully or partially dependent on the shape of the instrument body, Hornbostel–Sachs number [42] flute, reed, and brass.

  1. Displacement Whip
  2. Interruptive
    412.1. Idiophonic / reed
    412.2. Non-idiophonic
  3. Plosive
  4. Flute
    421.1. Non-fipple
    421.2. Fipple
  5. Reed
    422.1. Double reed
    422.2. Single reed
    422.3. Reed-pipe
  6. Brass
    423.1 Natural
    423.2 Chromatic

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