Types of Tubas

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There are many types of tubas, ranging in size and sound; learn more from our expert tuba player in this free tuba video music lesson on tuba parts.

Part of the Video Series: Tuba Lessons: Parts of a Tuba
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Video Transcript

Hi everyone, Kevin Smith, TubaLove here, talking about different types of tubas. And when I say type, I'm talking specifically about the different types of keys that are available. This happens to be what's called a C tuba. They're also B flat tubas, and E flat, as well as F tubas. And these are the four most common types, B flat, C, E flat, and F. Now what this means briefly is if I play this note, or one octave higher, that's a C. If I'm using the exact same position of my mouth and the exact same position of the valve in a B flat instrument it's going to play a B flat, which is one whole step below the C. And I'll discuss that more later. E flat is the same thing except that would give me the E flat a minor third above the C, a little bit higher. And then F would do the other step above the E flat. So I find I've played all of these types of instruments, I find C horns and B flats, which are in the contra bass family. C, B flats are very common instruments. I think C's are somewhat easier to tune. E flats you don't see that much anymore. They're sometimes used in bands. E flat will play exactly one octave above the lower instrument. And I'll talk about octaves later. F's are very popular now for solo instruments because they're automatically that much higher in pitch than any of the other instruments. But any rate, B flat, C, E flat, F those are your four varieties of tubas.

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