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What is the most popular jazz instrument?

So, I was wondering what the most popular jazz instrument was. Turns out, I wasn't the only one wanting to know the answer to this question. I saw several people asking that same question, one of them being on Yahoo Answers. No, obviously, it's a tough question to answer because of the following reasons:

  • People have their own personal favorite instrument(s). So, their opinion may be biased when it comes to what is the 'most popular' jazz instrument
  • Technically speaking, there is no such thing as a 'jazz instrument', because just about ANY instrument can be used in a jazz ensemble of jazz band. Hell, snapping your fingers could be considered a jazz instrument as there are a million examples of people snapping their fingers on a jazz recording or during a jazz band's performance
So, I decided to get extra geeky with it. I decided to open up Google KeyWord Planner. Then, I copied the names of instruments that were considered 'jazz instruments' from this large list.

Then, I pasted these instruments in, revealing how often people searched any given instrument name on Google. Here's the rundown:

The piano is definitely the most popular jazz instrument. People search google 500,000+ times every month for the word 'piano'.

Runners up include:
  • Guitar with 450,000 monthly searches. Of course, this can be a confusing answer because there's no way to tell whether or not the person searching for the word guitar is searching for a 'jazz guitar'
  • The kora has 301,000 monthly searches, but (again) the word 'kora' could refer to multiple things
  • Gong has 301,000 monthly searches
  • Bass has 301,000 monthly searches, but (again) could refer to multiple things. The jazz instrument itself is called an 'upright bass'
  • Violin has 246,000 monthly searches
  • The Harp, Flute, Tuba, and Didgeridoo have 135,000 monthly searches
P.S. Just in case you were wondering what my personal favorite 'jazz' instrument is... it's the vibraphone 😄