What Is the Easiest Instrument to Learn?

You may have heard that children can learn anything. That’s why you see young children learning multiple musical instruments and languages. In fact, some children demonstrate musical talent that puts accomplished adults to shame. However, just because children’s brains are more malleable doesn’t mean that adults can’t learn. Most adults want to know the easiest instrument to learn so that they can start with something manageable.

This varies because ease depends on many factors, including your age, how much effort and time you put into learning the instrument, and your natural talent. All three are essential when determining the easiest instrument to learn. Since we don’t know the specifics for different individuals, we’re taking a more general approach to the topic.

Easiest Instrument to Learn: Which Instruments to Start With

Not all musical instruments are created equal. Some instruments like the violin are notoriously difficult to master and take years of practice to master. However, not all instruments are an uphill battle. Some are definitely easier than others and can be tackled with ease.

The following are our picks for the easiest instruments to learn. While they still require practice and patience, they are known as musical instruments that are more welcoming and less stressful to master.

Ukulele

This four-stringed instrument is widely considered the easiest instrument to learn. It’s also a musical instrument that has soared in popularity thanks to many new indie artists, making it easy to meet others learning the ukulele too. Additionally, since the ukulele is so popular, it’s easy to find teachers or fellow students to practice with.

One of the reasons so many people begin their musical journey with the ukulele is that they don’t need to learn too many chords. Most simple ukulele songs only consist of two or three chords, making them quick to learn.

While there are four types of ukuleles (concert, baritone, soprano, and tenor), the soprano tends to be the most popular. It’s also the least costly, making it a more financially feasible investment than other instruments. The ukulele is also easy to maintain and doesn’t require any major tune-ups. All you need to do is occasionally change the strings, and you’ll be good to go.

Another reason for the ukulele being the easiest instrument to learn is its role in teaching you the fundamentals of string instruments. Once you’ve picked up the ukulele, you can easily move on to instruments like the guitar.

Piano

It’s easy to think of the piano as a complicated instrument instead of the easiest instrument to learn. We certainly understand why people fall victim to this line of thinking. This is mostly because you need to coordinate your hand movements perfectly to master this beautiful instrument. It’s also because you need to learn an additional skill – reading sheet music. However, once you’ve laid the foundation and come to terms with these, you can definitely pick up the piano quickly.

So, why is it one of the easiest instruments to learn? The notes are all laid out in front of you, making the process easy to understand. While you can pick the wrong notes, you can never play out of tune the way you can on other musical instruments. The piano also lets you experiment with different styles, and there are plenty of resources available to help you become a better player.

Harmonica

If you love sounds like folk, country, and blues, you can try learning the harmonica. In addition to being used by great artists like David Bowie and Bob Dylan, the harmonica is known as the easiest instrument to learn. This is because it’s difficult to sound bad when playing the harmonica. Since all the notes are in the same key, you’ll sound relatively good, even if you’re a beginner!

It’s also easy to pick up because the notes continue logically, i.e., from D to E and E to F, etc. Because of this, it’s relatively easy to get the hang of the basics.

Guitar

The guitar is also called the easiest instrument to learn. It’s similar to a ukulele in some respects but is a lot more versatile. If you’re a beginner looking for the easiest instrument to learn, you can’t go wrong with a six-string acoustic guitar. Leaning the chords might be tricky at first, but once you’ve mastered these, you’re well on your way to success.

If you’re more interested in a bass guitar, we’ve got good news. This is also a relatively simple instrument. In fact, some say it’s simpler than an acoustic guitar because it only has four strings. However, it’s also important to note that the frets are further apart, and the strings are thicker. Bass guitar is definitely the way to go if you’re into low notes. With its reputation as the easiest instrument to learn, you’ll unlikely to face major issues if you put in the required effort.

Considerations Before Picking a Musical Instrument

Now that you know the easiest instrument to learn, you might be tempted to choose it without further thought. However, learning how to play a new instrument is a big undertaking. You’ll likely buy the instrument and pay for lessons, making it a fairly large financial investment. Thus, it’s essential to consider a few key factors before making a final decision.

Goals and Aspirations

It’s also critical to assess your music aspirations and goals. For example, if you want to join a band, a bassoon probably isn’t the best choice of instrument. You’d be better off with the drums or bass guitar. On the other hand, if your dream involves the orchestra, choose a classical instrument like the flute. Alternatively, if you intend to be a solo performer, you should consider instruments like the guitar and ukulele.

Level of Learning

The instrument you choose also depends on the level of learning you’re willing to undertake. For example, are you willing to put in the work to learn how to read music? Many consider the piano to be the easiest instrument to learn. However, you’ll have to read a lot of sheet music to play. If you’re not willing to do this, you should look into instruments like guitar and drums that don’t require as much sheet music.

Personal Taste

Consider your taste in music before picking an instrument. You need to consider the genres you enjoy listening to and the kind of music you’re interested in. For example, if you enjoy rock and heavy metal, the harp may not be the best fit for you. Since it won’t inspire you as much as other instruments, it’s likely not the top choice for you.

Therefore, when picking an instrument, it’s important to consider different aspects. Many people pick the easiest instrument to learn instead of one that fits their needs and compliments their taste in music. However, it’s definitely possible to opt for the best of both worlds and pick an instrument that’s both easy and fulfilling.

As we’ve learned during this piece, not all musical instruments are suited to all people. Some individuals are better suited to woodwind instruments, while others excel at string instruments. While it’s certainly easy to choose the easiest instrument to learn and go from there, this isn’t the only criteria to look at before picking a musical instrument to learn. Keep the other factors in mind, and with enough practice, you’re sure to see results!

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Eduardo Perez is a multi-instrumentalist with over 20 years of experience playing instruments such as piano, guitar, ukulele, and bass. Having arranged songs and produced music in a recording studio, he has a wealth of knowledge to share about analyzing songs, composing, and producing. Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Musical Studies at Berklee College School of Music. Featured on Entrepreneur.com. Subscribe to his YouTube channel, or follow him on Instagram.