20 Musical Instruments That Start With The Letter D

Music is a universal language that has been enjoyed by people all around the world for centuries. One of the most fascinating aspects of music is the vast array of instruments that exist to create it. From the piano to the guitar, from the trumpet to the violin, there are countless instruments that have captured our imaginations and inspired us to make beautiful music.

In this article, we will be exploring a specific subset of instruments: those that begin with the letter D. While this may seem like a small category, there are actually many different instruments that fit this description, each with their own unique sound and history. Some of these instruments are well-known and widely played, while others are more obscure and lesser-known.

We will begin by examining some of the most popular and recognizable D instruments, such as the drum set and the double bass. We will also delve into the world of traditional and folk music, exploring instruments like the dulcimer and the duduk that are commonly used in specific cultural contexts. Finally, we will highlight some of the more unusual and esoteric D instruments, such as the didgeridoo and the daxophone.

Whether you are a musician yourself or simply a music enthusiast, this article will provide a fascinating and informative look at some of the unique and interesting instruments that begin with the letter D.

1. “Dabakan”

Having explored the magical possibilities of cymbals, it’s time to expand our musical horizons even further and take a look at another percussion instrument – the darbuka or ‘dabakan’. This small hand-held drum is an essential component in Middle Eastern music, often used as part of complex rhythms that add energy and excitement to any performance.

Playing this instrument can be quite tricky; unlike cymbals, there’s no one right way to do it. You’ll need to experiment with different techniques such as slapping, pressing and striking until you find what works best for you. As well as learning how to use your hands effectively, you should also practice mudhaf (rhythmic patterns) on the drumhead – these are fundamental when playing traditional Arabic music!

The key to mastering the dabakan lies in developing speed and accuracy; try using metronomes or tempo counting exercises to help improve your timing. Once you’re feeling confident enough, why not put together a few pieces? Combining various grooves and beats will give your composition an interesting texture – plus it’ll be lots of fun too!

No matter whether you’re just starting out or already have some experience under your belt, investing time into learning this instrument is sure to pay off. With its unique sound and versatile capabilities, incorporating the dabakan into your performances will take them from good to great!

2. “DHAD”

The DHAD, or double-headed hand drum, is an ancient musical instrument used widely in the Middle East and India. It has been around for thousands of years and is a unique percussion instrument with two heads that are connected by leather straps. The player holds the drum between their hands while striking both heads alternately to produce different tones. This creates a rhythmic sound which can be accompanied by other instruments such as flutes or tambourines.

This type of drum is known for its versatility; it can be used to create complex rhythms and melodies, but also for simpler accompaniments or background music. It’s played differently depending on the region and culture, so each performance will have its own unique style. For example, in some places it may feature more heavily in traditional dances, while in others it might just provide subtle texture to accompany singing or storytelling.

The DHAD isn’t only popular among musicians – there are many recreational players too! Whether you’re looking for something new to try at home or want to join an ensemble, this versatile instrument provides endless possibilities when exploring music from different cultures. Furthermore, if you’re looking for an affordable way to start playing drums then the DHAD could be perfect – they’re great value compared to larger kits.

You don’t need special skills to play the DHAD either; anyone who can keep time should find it easy enough to learn basic techniques quickly. All you need is a little practice and patience and soon you’ll be creating your own beats!

3. “DAF”

Moving on to another percussion instrument, the DAF is a traditional Middle Eastern frame drum. Unlike the DHAD, this one has only one head and is often played with sticks or hands. It’s an ancient instrument that has been used for centuries in various cultures around the world, from Greece to India. The sound of the DAF is quite distinct; it has a dry and low-pitched tone which can be heard from some distance away.

The versatility of the DAF makes it popular among many kinds of musicians – not just those playing folk music! Its unique sound complements other instruments like violins, guitars, flutes and keyboards. Additionally, its size means you don’t need much space to play – plus it’s lightweight so you can easily take it anywhere. Whether you’re looking for something new to learn or want to add texture to your recording projects, this affordable option could be perfect for you!

In terms of technique, playing the DAF requires coordination between both hands as well as concentration and practice. As with any rhythm-based instrument there are different techniques depending on what kind of sounds you want to create (such as rolls or trills). With patience and dedication anyone should eventually be able to master this intriguing little drum.

With its versatile sound and portability, the DAF provides endless possibilities for creativity whether alone or in an ensemble setting. So why not explore this captivating hand drum today?

4. “DAHU”

Another ancient Middle Eastern instrument is the dahu. This two-headed drum has a distinct sound that can be heard from some distance away, and it’s often used for traditional folk music. Unlike the DAF, this one requires both hands to play as each head produces different notes when struck with either hand. The player needs coordination between their arms and hands in order to produce its signature rhythm.

The sound of the dahu is quite unique; it has a dry, low tone which adds depth and texture to any ensemble or recording project. It also pairs well with other instruments like violins, guitars, flutes and keyboards – making it an excellent choice for those looking to add something new to their repertoire! Additionally, due to its size and weight you don’t need much space or strength in order to take it anywhere you go.

For those interested in learning how to play the dahu there are various techniques available such as rolls and trills – however patience and practice are key if you want master them all! As with any musical instrument playing takes dedication but mastering it will bring great rewards in terms of creativity and expression.

So why not explore this captivating two-headed drum today? Whether alone or in an ensemble setting, the unique sounds of the dahu could provide endless possibilities for your music-making adventures.

5. “DAIKO”

The daiko is another traditional Middle Eastern instrument with a long and storied history. This single-headed drum produces a bright, resonant sound that can be heard from far away, making it perfect for outdoor performances or ceremonial occasions. It’s much bigger than the dahu, but still light enough to carry around without too much difficulty.

Playing the daiko requires coordination between both hands and feet – each hand striking the head of the drum in different places while the foot keeps time on the bottom skin. With practice you’ll be able to create various rhythms and patterns which will give your performance more depth and interest! Additionally, there are techniques such as rolls and trills which require even more skillful playing.

When used together with other instruments like violins, guitars or keyboards, the daiko adds an exciting layer to any ensemble setting – bringing color and texture to any song. And if you’re looking for something a bit different when recording music then this instrument could just provide what you need!

Overall, learning how to play the daiko can open up many possibilities for musicians who wish to explore its unique sounds and textures. So why not take up this fascinating instrument today? You never know where it might lead you musically… …and the possibilities are endless!

6. “DAMAN”

Continuing our exploration of ancient musical instruments, we turn to the daman. This is a stringed instrument that has been used for centuries throughout Central Asia and North Africa. It features four strings made from gut or nylon that are tuned in intervals to create different sounds. Its unique construction allows it to be played with either hands or a bow, giving musicians plenty of options when crafting their music.

The daman’s sound is often described as being similar to that of the violin or guitar but much softer and more mellow – perfect for creating calming atmospheres or gentle melodies. Players can express themselves through various techniques such as plucking, strumming and hammering on the strings which gives them greater control over the music they produce. And its portability makes it very easy to take along wherever you go!

In addition to playing solo pieces, the daman also works well in ensemble settings where several players work together to create dynamic music full of texture and depth. Whether accompanying singers or blending into larger orchestras, this versatile instrument adds an extra layer of beauty and complexity that will captivate any audience.

For anyone looking for something new and exciting to explore musically then taking up the daman could be just what you need! With practice and dedication you’ll soon find yourself producing beautiful tunes that bring joy to all who hear them.


Having now explored the daman, let’s move on to another traditional stringed instrument – the dankiyo. This is a four-stringed lute that has been used in various parts of Central Asia and North Africa for centuries. It differs from other instruments as it utilizes two bridges instead of one; this allows players to generate different tones depending on how they pluck or strum the strings. Its sound is mellow yet powerful, making it ideal for creating both gentle melodies and upbeat rhythms.

Unlike some other folk instruments, playing the dankiyo doesn’t require any special technique or skill level – anyone can pick up the basics quickly and start enjoying its unique soundscape right away! You can experiment with different styles such as bluesy riffs or intricate patterns which adds plenty of variety to your repertoire. And thanks to its portability you can take it anywhere you go so you’ll never be without music when inspiration strikes.

The dankiyo also works well in ensemble settings where several musicians come together to create something truly magical. Whether accompanying singers or blending into larger orchestras, its versatility ensures everyone will be captivated by its sounds. Plus, many of these pieces are passed down through generations ensuring their timelessness continues even today!

So whether you’re looking for an easy way to express yourself musically or want to explore a new tradition altogether then taking up the dankiyo could be just what you need! With practice and dedication you’ll soon find yourself producing beautiful tunes that bring joy to all who hear them.


Having explored the mellow tones of the dankiyo, let’s take a look at another traditional instrument – the Darbuka. This hourglass-shaped drum has been used by many cultures in Africa and Asia since ancient times. Its distinctive shape creates an array of sounds that can be both subtle and powerful depending on how it’s played. It is usually made from clay or metal with goatskin stretched over its top to create a unique resonance.

The beauty of playing this percussion instrument lies in its simplicity. All you need are sticks and some practice! There are no complicated techniques involved; just basic strokes and rhythms which anyone can learn quickly. Once mastered, you can use it to accompany singers or form part of an ensemble where each musician contributes their own beat for a captivating performance. Plus, as there are so many variations available today you’re sure to find one that suits your style perfectly!

Another advantage of learning how to play the Darbuka is that it helps improve coordination and develop musical awareness. You’ll soon start recognizing different beats, tempos, and dynamics which will give you greater control when crafting your own compositions. And if you ever get stuck then simply listen to recordings online – they provide great inspiration too!

So why not pick up a pair of sticks and see what magic awaits? With dedication and patience you could become the master of your own groove before long!


Moving on from the Darbuka, let’s explore another fascinating instrument – the Daxophone. This peculiar contraption is made up of a thin wooden board (known as a tongue) with metal keys that can be plucked to produce an array of sounds. It was created in 1968 by German artist Hans Reichel and has since become popular among experimental musicians due to its distinct timbres and tones.

The beauty of this instrument lies not just in its range but also in how it’s played. Rather than striking or strumming like other instruments, you play it by pressing down onto the keys which causes them to vibrate against the surface of the tongue. The higher they are pressed, the louder and more intense the sound becomes. You can even create beautiful tremolos and glissandos if done right!

Not only does playing the Daxophone help develop your finger dexterity but also teaches patience and dedication too. As each key produces different tones depending on where it’s pressed, creating unique melodies requires careful listening until you get a feel for what works best. And because no two pieces ever sound exactly alike, every performance feels like new musical exploration!

So why not challenge yourself? With practice and perseverance, mastering this unusual instrument could open up whole new sonic possibilities for your compositions!

10. “DEF”

So what is the Daxophone? DEF stands for ‘Dynamic Expression Fiddle’ and it’s an incredibly expressive instrument. It consists of a metal bar attached to a thin wooden board, known as its tongue, which has a series of perforated keys along one side. When these keys are plucked or pressed against the surface of the tongue they vibrate and create beautiful tones.

The beauty of this instrument lies in how you play it – rather than simply strumming or striking it like other instruments, your finger dexterity comes into play when pressing down on each key to produce different sounds. The higher you press them, the louder and more intense the sound becomes – creating different pitches and harmonies along the way. You can even create tremolos and glissandos if done right!

Playing the Daxophone takes commitment and patience – learning where each note should be placed and understanding exactly how much pressure needs to be applied isn’t always easy. But with practice and determination you’ll get there eventually – not only will playing become easier but also more enjoyable too! And once mastered, you’ll have access to an expansive range of sonic possibilities that would otherwise remain undiscovered.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re just starting out on your musical exploration path or looking to add something new to your compositions – mastering this unusual instrument could open up exciting opportunities! So why not give it a go?

11. “DHOL”

Having ventured into the world of dynamic expression with the Daxophone, let’s now turn our attention to a more traditional instrument: the dhol. This two-headed drum is an essential part of Punjabi and Bhangra music – its thunderous rhythms are unmistakable! It’s played by striking both heads simultaneously with padded sticks, creating a powerful sound that can fill any room.

So what makes the dhol so special? Well for starters it has a unique shape – one head is larger than the other which gives it added depth in tone. Plus, when playing live you’ll find yourself using your whole body to really get those beats going – traditional techniques involve pushing against your chest and shoulders as well as bouncing around on your toes to create some truly captivating sounds.

It doesn’t take long to learn how to play this iconic instrument; from basic hand movements to complex polyrhythms and solos there’s something here for everyone. Even if you don’t have much experience or knowledge of Indian culture, the sheer power of this instrument will keep you enthralled. And with just some practice and dedication you could soon be jamming away like a pro!

The dhol is full of energy and life – its distinctive beats add vibrancy and excitement wherever they’re heard. So why not give it a try? You never know what musical surprises await… … you if you take the plunge and give the dhol a go!


From the thunderous rhythms of the dhol, let’s move on to a different type of instrument: the didgeridoo. This ancient Australian wind instrument is made from a hollowed-out tree trunk and produces deep, low tones that are nothing short of mesmerizing. It’s been used for centuries by Aboriginal people as part of their spiritual ceremonies – it’s said to have healing powers!

But just because it has a long history doesn’t mean you can’t learn how to play today. In fact, mastering this unique instrument takes time and dedication but with some practice anyone can become an expert player. All it takes is good breath control and proper technique – once you get the hang of it, you’ll be creating your own music in no time.

The sound produced by the didgeridoo is unlike any other – its haunting drone will transport you into another world entirely! Plus, playing solo or jamming with others can lead to amazing musical experiences which often defy description. What’s more, if you’re willing to explore different styles there are plenty of opportunities out there; from traditional Aboriginal sounds to modern jazz fusion – anything goes when it comes to exploring the power of this majestic instrument!

So why not give the didgeridoo a try? You never know what kind of magical moments await… …until you give it a go!

13. “DIZI”

Let’s move on to another traditional instrument that has been captivating listeners around the world for centuries: the dizi. This Chinese flute is known for its bright, clear sound and its ability to express a range of emotions. From joy and excitement to sorrow and despair – you can feel it all in the music!

The dizi consists of two parts: a bamboo body with six finger holes and a metal mouthpiece. It takes some time to master this instrument but once you have the basics down, you’ll be able to create beautiful melodies by using different combinations of notes. You’ll also need good breath control so that your playing is even throughout the piece.

In addition to producing solo pieces, the dizi is often used as part of an ensemble or orchestra setting too. Although small, it more than holds its own when backed up by drums, gongs and other instruments – creating a unique blend of sounds that will take your breath away! And if you’re feeling adventurous why not try combining elements from different genres like jazz or classical? The possibilities are endless!

No matter what kind of music you’re into, learning how to play the dizi will help bring out your creative side while allowing you to explore new musical ideas and directions. So go ahead – give this fascinating instrument a chance and see where it takes you!


The double contrabass flute is a unique instrument that has been gaining popularity in recent years. This unusual flute stands at an impressive two meters tall, making it one of the largest instruments around! Its size allows for deeper tones than other types of flutes and gives players access to low notes they wouldn’t be able to reach with regular-sized instruments.

It can take some time getting used to playing this instrument – but once you do, you’ll find a whole new range of sounds available to you. Plus, its huge sound chamber creates a rich reverberation effect that adds depth and texture to your music. Whether you’re playing classical or jazz tunes, the double contrabass flute will add something special that no other instrument can offer.

If solo performances aren’t quite your thing then why not try joining an ensemble? The booming bass line from this beastly flute will fill out any group sound and provide great contrast against higher pitched woodwinds like piccolos or clarinets. And if you’re feeling adventurous – why not join forces with drums and electric guitars too? That way, you can explore all sorts of different genres without losing the unique character of your instrument.

So whether you’re just starting out on your musical journey or looking for something fresh and exciting – give the double contrabass flute a go! You might discover amazing new possibilities as well as open up interesting avenues for further exploration. Who knows what creative heights you could reach by mastering this powerful instrument?

15. “DRUM”

Drums are a classic instrument that have been played for centuries. From its African roots to the modern day, this powerful percussion instrument has become an integral part of many musical genres. Whether you’re playing rock, jazz, hip hop or anything else – drums will always be at the heart of it all.

For those just starting out on their drumming journey, there’s a wide range of options available. You could start with something simple like hand drums or bongos and then progress onto larger instruments such as snare and bass drums. And once you’ve mastered these basics, why not explore more diverse sounds? Electronic kits offer endless possibilities when it comes to experimentation with rhythms and beats – so don’t shy away from pushing your creative boundaries!

No matter what type of music you’re playing, having good technique is essential in order to get the best sound out of your drums. Practicing regularly will help you develop skills like control and precision which can make even the most basic beat groove along nicely. It’ll also give you better stamina whilst performing live shows – so practice makes perfect!

Of course, learning about music theory alongside your practicing can come in handy too. Knowing how different elements work together gives musicians an understanding of composition which can take their performance from good to great. So if you want to really master the power of the drum kit – make sure to brush up on some theory knowledge as well!


For those looking to take their drumming experience further, a drum machine could be the perfect addition. Unlike traditional drums that rely on physical movement and technique, these machines create rhythm tracks with just the press of a button. This makes them great for experimentation – allowing you to explore different sounds and styles without having to master any complex techniques.

Plus, they’re incredibly versatile too! Many models come with built-in sound banks containing thousands of samples from various genres which can be easily manipulated using knobs and sliders. This means there’s no limit when it comes to crafting your own unique beats – so get creative and have fun!

Drum machines also offer plenty of practical benefits as well. For example, if you’re recording in a studio or performing live shows, you don’t need to lug around an entire set of drums every time – all you need is one small device! And best of all? You won’t risk annoying your neighbors either; most modern drum machines are designed to be very quiet when not in use.

So whether you want to add some extra flavor to your beats or simply make life easier for yourself – a drum machine could be the perfect solution. With its portability and easy-to-use interface, it’s definitely worth considering if you’re serious about taking your music up a notch.


The dulcian is a woodwind instrument, an early ancestor of the bassoon. It’s a double reed instrument, meaning that two pieces of cane are attached together to create sound when the player blows into it. The dulcian was popular from the mid-16th century through the 18th century and could be found in opera pits and chamber orchestras.

Its body is made out of maple or boxwood with metal keys covering some finger holes. This allows for chromatic notes not available on other instruments as well as giving players more control over dynamics and articulation. As a result, composers often wrote music specifically for this instrument, featuring its unique capabilities.

Though similar to the modern bassoon, the dulcian has several differences which set it apart musically. For example, most models don’t have an octave key like modern bassoons do; instead they have additional toneholes that produce higher pitches than their lower counterparts. Additionally, while there are some similarities between certain tones produced by both instruments, due to the difference in construction materials used in each model, these tones can vary drastically depending on who is playing them and what type of reeds were used for that particular performance.

Overall, the dulcian is a fascinating historical instrument that still holds relevance today thanks to its distinct tonal character and expressive possibilities. Its unique features make it a great addition to any ensemble or solo performance where one wishes to evoke a classical atmosphere or explore new musical horizons.


The dulcimer is a stringed instrument that has been around for centuries, and it continues to be popular today. This string-plucked instrument produces a distinctive sound that can range from delicate and soothing to lively and energetic. Its name comes from the Latin word “dulce” meaning sweet or soft, hinting at its tranquil tones.

Though similar in appearance to other instruments such as the autoharp and zither, the dulcimer stands apart with its unique design. It consists of two bridges over strings laid on a wooden board, allowing players to create melodies by pressing down different combinations of strings with their fingers or mallets. With multiple tuning options available, it’s easy for musicians to customize their playing styles and make music tailored for any occasion.

The dulcimer has an interesting history that stretches back through many generations; from traditional folk music played throughout Europe and Asia Minor to Americana roots music brought across the sea by settlers years ago. The instrument was even featured prominently in Appalachian songs during the 19th century! Despite having gone through numerous changes since then, the fundamental structure of this time-honored instrument remains largely unchanged.

Today, the dulcimer can still bring joy to anyone willing to devote some effort into learning how to play it – no matter what age they are or where they come from. As long as there have been people eager enough to learn new things musically, this versatile little box will continue providing them with hours of entertainment!


As another traditional plucked string instrument, the dulzaina is also a descendant of ancient musical instruments. Unlike the dulcimer, however, this particular instrument has its origins in Spain and Portugal. In essence, it’s like a small shawm or oboe that produces a high-pitched sound when played. The body of the instrument consists of three parts – a conical bore with seven finger holes, an upper reed made from cane and a lower reed made from wood – giving it all the necessary elements for producing beautiful music.

The earliest depictions of the dulzaina date back to 15th century European artworks; but even then, this wind instrument was already associated with festive occasions such as weddings and carnivals. It took on different shapes over time before settling into what we know today: A cylindrical wooden tube with two single reeds at either end which are activated by blowing air through them while simultaneously pressing down on one of the keys located near the mouthpiece.

Today, many folk bands throughout Europe still feature the dulzaina among their members since its unique sound gives depth and character to any ensemble performance. From lively polkas to soothing ballads; no matter what type of music they’re playing, they can always count on this little gem to carry out its role perfectly!

All in all, whether you’re looking for something specific or just want to broaden your horizons musically speaking; adding a couple of melody makers like these can be surefire way to make your performances stand out from the crowd!

20. “DUTAR”

The dutar is a traditional two-stringed lute from Central Asia. It has a long, fretless neck with a round body made of wood and covered in leather or parchment. The strings are typically made of nylon or steel and they’re plucked using the right hand while the left hand adjusts the tuning pegs to create various tones. This instrument produces a warm, mellow sound that can range from soft and gentle to loud and powerful.

Dutars have been used for centuries in many types of music such as folk songs, classical pieces, popular tunes, and even modern compositions. They’ve also been featured prominently in films such as “Lagaan” and “The Kite Runner” where their distinct timbre adds an extra layer of emotion to any scene. Besides being incredibly versatile instruments; their unique design has also become very fashionable in recent years due to its attractive shape and vibrant colors!

One thing worth noting about this type of lute is its ability to change keys quickly which makes it ideal for improvisation sessions. Players can easily slide up or down the fretboard during performances allowing them to explore different musical possibilities within just one song. As if that weren’t enough; some models come equipped with additional features like pickups so you can amplify your sound without needing an external amp!

Overall, the dutar provides excellent value for money making it an ideal choice for anyone looking to add character into their playing style regardless of genre or level of experience!

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