Acoustics of Woodwind Instruments

  • John M. Eargle


The woodwinds include both reed and nonreed instruments, and the only common element between them is the use of keyed tone holes for changing pitch. At one time, they were all made of wood, but that has long changed. Today, various metals are used, as are certain plastics. But out of this diversity comes a surprising blend of sound, and a fine woodwind section is the prize asset of a modern symphony orchestra.


Sound Radiation Symphony Orchestra Lower Note Narrow Dynamic Range Musical Acoustics 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References Cited

  1. Benade, A. 1985. “From Instrument to Ear in a Room: Direct or via Recording.” J. Audio Engineering Society 33, no. 4 (April).Google Scholar
  2. Clark, M., and D. Luce. 1965. “Intensities of Orchestral Instrument Scales Played at Prescribed Markings.” J. Audio Engineering Society 13, no. 3.Google Scholar
  3. Culver, C. 1956. Musical Acoustics. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  4. Meyer, J. 1978. Acoustics and the Performance of Music. Trans. Bowsher and Westphal. Frankfurt: Verlag Das Musikinstrument.Google Scholar
  5. Olson, H. 1952. Musical Engineering. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  6. Patterson, B. 1974. “Musical Dynamics.” Scientific American 231, no. 5 (Nov.).Google Scholar

Recommended Reading

  1. Backus, J. 1969. The Acoustical Foundations of Music. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  2. Benade, A. 1976. Fundamentals of Musical Acoustics. New York: Oxford.Google Scholar
  3. Berg, R., and D. Stork. 1982. The Physics of Sound. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  4. Campbell, M., and C. Greated. 1987. The Musician’s Guide to Acoustics. New York: Schirmer Books.Google Scholar
  5. Fletcher, N., and T. Rossing. 1991. The Physics of Musical Instruments. New York: Springer-Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Joppig, G. 1988. The Oboe and the Bassoon. Portland, OR: Amadeus Press.Google Scholar
  7. Meylan, R. 1988. The Flute. Portland, OR: Amadeus Press.Google Scholar
  8. Moravcsik, M. 1987. Musical Sound. New York: Paragon House.Google Scholar
  9. The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. 1980. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  10. The New Harvard Dictionary of Music. 1986. Cambridge: Harvard.Google Scholar
  11. The New Oxford Companion to Music. 1983. New York: Oxford.Google Scholar
  12. Pierce, J. 1983. The Science of Musical Sound. W. H. Freeman, New York.Google Scholar
  13. Rossing, T. 1990. The Science of Sound. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar

Additional Resources

  1. Brown, Ruth. Have a Good Time. Compact disc produced by Fantasy Records, FCD-9661-2 (reference: band 9, 6:37 to 7:22 minutes).Google Scholar
  2. Rousseau, Eugene. Saxophone Colors. Compact disc produced by Delos International, CD 1007.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • John M. Eargle

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations