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"And his brother's name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ." (Genesis, chapter 4:21)


Keyboard Instruments

This family includes instruments whose playing mechanisms are operated from a keyboard. In most of the keyboard instruments, notes are produced by the vibration of stretched strings.
They all have a keyboard but they are different in some senses:
Some of these instruments are stricken mechanically, as in the piano (formerly called the pianoforte) and clavichord. Others are played with hammers, as in the dulcimer and cimbalom. The organ and accordion have keyboards but they are members of the reed-organ family. The virginal, spinet and harpsichord's strings are plucked, much like the fretted instruments.
Keyboards are not usually played in the symphony orchestra, unless the composer requested them especially to play in a musical work performed by the orchestra. Much used in a wide range of music-making, these instruments make rare appearances in the concert-hall (other than the piano, of course).
The piano is the most popular and versatile keyboard instrument on the symphonic stage, as well as in Jazz music, Pop and Rock & Roll. Modern keyboard instruments like the Electric organ and synthesizer are used for modern music in different styles ranging from Blues to Dance and electronic music styles (House, techno and Drum 'n Bass).


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