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The xylophone is a component of the percussion section of an orchestra and many instrumental groups. Its unique sound, relative rarity and appearance make it fascinating to the listener. The xylophone has a close cousin called the marimba. Both instruments consist of wooden keys mounted on a wooden frame over a series of metal tubes called resonators.

Hammering on the wooden keys causes the impact to resonate through the tubes. The xylophone has a brittle, metallic sound, while the marimba is somewhat more mellow or wooden to the listener. The xylophone possibly originated in Southeast Asia or Oceania and today exists in forms as simple as two or three logs laid across a player?s legs or as wooden slabs set across two supports such as logs; a pit dug in the earth may act as a resonating chamber. Most often the wooden bars may be set on insulating material and pinned in place along two edges of a resonator box or suspended above it with cords.

As a beginner, you're going to need to take things slowly as you learn the xylophone. Regular practice is a necessity for improving any instrumental talent. The xylophone is no exception. Find melodies you'd like to learn and practice them as many times as needed until you are proficient at them. It will also be helpful to practice xylophone "drills" daily, working to increase your speed and accuracy as you play. Practice every day to hone your skills.

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