The trumpet was first used in the military to rhythmically sound signals to the the troops. Today, the trumpet is one of the world’s most popular instruments and is used in a variety of musical settings including jazz and concert bands. Along with the very popular Bb trumpet, there are trumpets in C, D, E, Eb, Piccolo trumpets, Cornets and Flugelhorns.
The most popular trumpet for beginners. The B-flat trumpet is the standard instrument for almost all musical genres from orchestral to jazz. This is primarily because of the B-flat trumpet’s versatility in terms of both range and tone.
The C trumpet is the instrument of choice for many orchestral players in North America. The C trumpet has superior projection compared to B-flat instruments, and many players find it easier to transpose from the key of C.
The cornet is similar in range to the trumpet but has a greater proportion of conical-bore tubing. This increases breath resistance which provides greater flexibility with a generally softer, more mellow tone.
E, E-flat, & D Trumpet
These higher-pitched trumpets were originally developed to facilitate the difficult high passages encountered in many baroque compositions. Today they are increasingly being use to enhance high-range security and tonal clarity in a wide range of symphonic works.
These trumpets are mainly used to play the high natural trumpet parts of baroque compositions by Bach, Handel, Telemann, and their contemporaries. These small trumpets provide significantly improved agility and security in the high register, while making it easier to perform clean, light trills.
The Flugelhorn is a B-flat instrument like the standard trumpet, but it has a small bore and large-throated bell. The flugelhorn has a soft, dark tone which falls somewhere between that of the trumpet and French horn. Although traditionally an important element of the brass band, the Flugelhorn is a popular instrument for contempory jazz.