Musical Instruments That Start With the Letter C

Some of the most popular musical instruments that start with the letter C are cello, chimes, clarinet, cymbals, C soprano saxophone, congas, and clavichord. Here is a list of musical instruments starting with the letter C, along with a little bit of information about each one.

  • C SOPRANO SAXOPHONE – The soprano saxophone is the highest-pitched member of the saxophone family.
  • CAJON – A box-shaped percussion instrument originating from Peru, typically played with the hands.
  • CALLIOPE – A large, steam-powered organ that produces a loud, shrill sound.
  • CARILLON – A set of bells, usually housed in a tower, that can be played manually or using a keyboard.
  • CASTANETS – A pair of small, handheld shells that are clicked together.
  • CELESTA – A keyboard instrument that is similar to a piano but has a much softer, bell-like sound.
  • CELLO – A bowed string instrument, typically played with classical music but also appearing in some rock and jazz bands.
  • CHARANGO – A small, ten-stringed guitar-like instrument from the Andes mountains of South America.
  • CHIMES – A set of tuned metal tubes of different lengths that are struck with a mallet.
  • CIGAR BOX GUITAR – A guitar-like instrument made out of a cigar box, typically with only one or two strings.
  • CIMBASSO – A large, tuba-like brass instrument with a deep, rich sound.
  • CLAPPER – A two wood, metal, or ivory plates that are struck together, typically used in folk music.
  • CLAPSTICKS – Contains two wooden sticks that are struck together, typically used in Aboriginal music.
  • CLARINET – A woodwind instrument with a single reed that is used in a wide variety of music genres.
  • CLAVICHORD – An early keyboard instrument that has a softer, more muted sound than the piano.
  • CLAVINET – A keyboard instrument that combines elements of the piano and the harpsichord, with a distinctive electric sound.
  • CONCERTINA – A free-reed musical instrument, similar to an accordion, that is played by pressing buttons or keys.
  • CONGAS – A single-headed drum of Cuban origin, typically played with the hand.
  • CONTRABASSOON – A low-pitched member of the woodwind family, typically used in symphony orchestras.
  • CYMBALS – A percussion instrument that has two metal plates that are struck together, typically used in symphony orchestras.


Musical instruments come in all shapes and sizes. The instruments on this list are just a small sampling of the huge array of instruments that exist in the world. With this list, you might discover your new favorite musical instrument that starts with the letter C!