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The World’s 10 Most Unusual Music Instruments

Most aspiring musicians pick up traditional instruments such as the piano, violin or guitar. But others consider those instruments as “too mainstream.”


November 10, 2017 

Here is a list of some of the most unusual musical instruments ever created, including some you probably never heard of before:

 

10. Loophonium

The marriage of a euphonium and a lavatory. It was made for a concert of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra on April Fools’ Day 1960, at which the instrument was played. The man who did it was the orchestra’s principal flutist Fritz Spiegl.

loophonium unusual music instrument

 

9. The Music Box

A 22,000 lb vibratory compactor, turned into a 2000 lb music box, capable of being moved through a single door, and installed in a second-floor gallery–and of playing The Star Spangled Banner.

Big Musical Box Unusual Instrument

8. The Chrisalis

Invented and built by Cris Forster, the Chrysalis was his first concert-sized instrument. The instrument’s design was inspired by a vast, round, stone-hewn Aztec calendar. Cris thought to himself, “What if there were a musical instrument in the shape of a wheel? And what if this wheel had strings for spokes, could spin, and when played, would sound like the wind?”

Chrysalis Unusual Music Instrument

7. Pikasso Guitar

Its name ostensibly derived from its likeness in appearance to the cubist works of Pablo Picasso. The instrument is a harp guitar with four necks, two sound holes, and 42 strings. It has a unique wedge-shaped body. The original was built in 1984 for jazz guitarist Pat Metheny.

pikasso guitar

6. Badgermin

What do you get if you cross a dead badger with a theremin? Dubbed the Badgermin, this particular combination of dead mammal and the weird electronic musical instrument will tantalize your ears as well as your eyes.

Badgermin unusual music instrument

5. The Sharpsichord

A massive solar-powered music box with 11,520 holes…and no home.

sharpsichord unusual music instrument

4. The Cat Piano

Athanasius Kircher, a 17th-century German Jesuit scholar, documented some fantastical devices including the Katzenklavier (“cat piano”). Here’s Reil’s description of the machine: “An octave’s worth of cats arranged in a row with their tails stretched behind them. And a keyboard fitted out with sharpened nails would be set on them. The struck cats would provide the sound. As far as anyone knows, nobody’s ever constructed a true Cat Piano, and we sure hope no one will.

the cat piano unusual music instrument

3. The serpent

The serpent is the bass wind instrument, descended from the cornett, and a distant ancestor of the tuba, with a mouthpiece like a brass instrument but side holes like a woodwind. It is usually a long cone bent into a snakelike shape, hence the name. The serpent is closely related to the cornett, although it is not part of the cornett family, due to the absence of a thumb hole.the serpent instrument

2. The Nellophone

The Nellophone is an instrument made of a tube (1,8 to 9 meters long), arranged in a circle of 3,6 meters wide. The player is standing in the middle of the instrument and slaps the opening of the tubes with some different paddles. The pitch if each tube is defined by its length.

nellophone unusual music instrument

1. Bikelophone

Originally constructed in June 1995 as a side instrument for The Lyle and Sparkleface Band, the bikelophone has evolved into a palette of sonic exploration. The bikelophone produces sounds ranging from tranquil bliss to cacophonic terror. Using a loop-based recording system and outboard signal processors (reverbs, delays, pitch shifts, etc.), sound compositions are built in layers.

Bikelophone Unusual Music Instrument
 

By CMUSE

Read full article at cmuse.org

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