How to Blow a Hunting Horn

brass bugle image by Richard J Thompson from

The hunting horn is a member of the bugle family, and is closely related to trumpets and other brass instruments. If you have ever played a French horn, tuba, trumpet, or other brass horn, you will be able to master a hunting horn fairly easily. However, you can successfully blow a hunting horn even if you have no musical experience. With a little practice, you can learn to blow a hunting horn in an afternoon.

Remove the mouthpiece from the hunting horn, if the mouthpiece is detachable. It is easier to master the correct embouchure, or lip placement, using a mouthpiece only.

Pucker your lips slightly, and hold the hunting horn mouthpiece against your lips. There should be a small space between your lips.

Open your throat as though you are going to yawn, and blow into the mouthpiece of the hunting horn with a steady stream of air, keeping your tongue away from your front teeth.

Tighten and loosen your lips until the mouthpiece produces a steady sound. Adjust the tightness of your pucker or the distance between your lips if the sound trails off.

Blow the horn with the minimum lip pressure necessary to produce a sound. Over-tightening your lips will tire your lip muscles sooner.

Flick your tongue against your front teeth to cut off the flow of air. Blow short, sharp notes by flicking your tongue forward.

Blow lower notes by opening your lips wider, and blow higher notes by closing your embouchure more tightly.


About the Author

Fred Samsa has been writing articles related to the arts, entertainment and home improvement since 2003. His work has appeared in numerous museum publications, including program content for the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and he was awarded a Presidential Fellowship in 2005. He holds a Master of Arts in art from Temple University and a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from Brown University.

Photo Credits

  • brass bugle image by Richard J Thompson from