Friday, January 8, 2016

incidental instruments

When I was a kid, our aunt wrapped a paper tissue around a hair comb. 'Hold this to your lips and hum,' she said. A pleasing buzz issued forth. Humming a melody into the comb produced instrumental sound - perhaps like a kazoo.

We had small electric fans in our house. Calling 'ahhhh' into the whirling blades also produced amusing vibrations of sound.

A friend put dry beans - like pintos - in an empty beer can and used it for percussive sound in a local band.

There's an old tradition of using a washboard for rhythm. Kids run along wood fences making rattling rhythm with sticks, and as grownup musicians recreate such effects on stage running a stick, thimble, or wooden spoon against a washboard.

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