Do you want to learn how to play a new music instrument, but don’t want to spend a lot of money?
Then I have great news for you, because I will list my top 5 recommendations for inexpensive instruments. All these instruments are melodic btw, meaning no shakers or drums on this list.
Let’s get to the Top 5 list of cheap music instruments, and I also have a special bonus instrument for you at the end.
Top 5 Cheap Music Instruments
- Tin Whistle
All of these instruments are not only very inexpensive to buy, but they are also easy for beginners to learn. Let’s have a look at each one:
You can get a decent melodica for less than 30 US dollars, and it’s an excellent first instrument to learn. Because it has a simple piano layout, and is very easy to play. Simply press down a key, and blow air into the tube attached to it.
You can start playing melodies in a few minutes, but when you advance on this instrument you can actually perform very cool expressive techniques like grace notes, crescendos, vibrato etc.
You can get a starter ukulele for 20-30 US dollars, and it is a perfect comping instrument for both kids and adults. Comping means to play chords and rhythm to back up the melody, which in most cases will be yourself or another person singing the lyrics.
Simply learn the pattern for a few basic chords, and you will get started playing your favorite songs in no time.
It might have a bad reputation from all the beginner school children playing this instrument very badly, but the recorder can in fact play every single note of every scale of music, in more than 2 octaves, which makes it extremely versatile.
If you can avoid those dreaded squeeks from leaky holes, it can be an excellent cheap instrument to learn. You will get a nice soprano recorder for around 10 US dollars.
4. Tin Whistle
The tin whistle is similar to a recorder, but the difference is that this is a diatonic instrument, which means it is tuned to a specific key. The upside of any diatonic instrument, is that it is way easier to learn, since you basically can not play a note outside the scale.
This is because it is based on 7 notes of the key it is tuned to, which generally is D major on classic Irish tin whistles. You can get a high D tin whistle for around 10 US dollars.
Like the tin whistle, the Kalimba is a diatonic instrument, in most cases it will be tuned to C major. This means it is similar to playing only the white keys on a piano. It makes it very easy to learn how to play melodies on.
And the sound is very relaxing and beautiful. You can get a decent kalimba for as low as 30 US dollars.
Bonus Instrument: The Kazoo
This is often looked upon as a toy instrument, and indeed it has a funny buzzing sound that almost sounds like an angry bee. But don’t dismiss it, because you can get one for as cheap as 1 US dollar, and it is super fun to play. Just hum melodies into it and that’s it, one of easiest instrument ever made.
And even if you probably will never play it live, it is a great instrument to practice your voice control with. Meaning getting good pitch on each note, doing vibrato and other expressive techniques, and so on.