Archive
Music
Early Drum Machine (Jun, 1960)

What the heck is a flooglehorn?

You Play it Sweet, Side Man Gives the Beat
SOME oscillating tubes, housed in a cabinet sitting next to your piano, guitar or flooglehorn, can turn you into a one-man orchestra.

The cabinet, actually a new electronic instrument called Side Man, produces a variety of instrumental sounds—from bass drum, torn torn and wood block to maracas, brush and cymbal.

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HOW TO MAKE A Potato and Banana Band (Nov, 1935)

HOW TO MAKE A Potato and Banana Band

Novel musical instruments like ocarinas formed from ordinary clay in shape of various fruits and vegetables

By R. H. JENKINS
Professor of Industrial Education Humboldt State Teachers College, Arcata, Calif.

MUSIC has been played on many instruments, but one of the simplest and most novel types can be obtained indirectly from the vegetable garden.

In any music store may be purchased a little instrument known as an ocarina. It is really a whistle made of clay, and, because of its shape, is sometimes known as a “sweet potato.” Though not extremely melodious, it is easily played and affords a great deal of entertainment.

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Gibson Banjos (Mar, 1924)

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JAZZ INSTRUMENT MINUS KEYS “PLAYED” BY HUMMING (Jan, 1924)

JAZZ INSTRUMENT MINUS KEYS “PLAYED” BY HUMMING
Producing music with a “jazzy” effect, a keyless reed instrument is being made which can be “played” by anyone who can hum a tune. Equipped with a rest, it can he kept in the proper position without being held by the hands, and can be used to accompany any selection. Having sufficient volume and carrying power, it is suitable for orchestral work.

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Here’s How Harmonicas Are Made (Jul, 1947)

Here’s How Harmonicas Are Made

HARMONICAS, like many another product, have taken their place on U.S. assembly lines. Largely imported before the war, the ubiquitous and versatile instruments, more familiarly known as mouth organs, will be mostly American-made from now on.

With an estimated 3,600,000 slated for production in 1947 by one factory alone, the hip-pocket band has rapidly become a precision-made, mass-production commodity with a wide public appeal and an industry all its own. Invented more than a century ago, the harmonica was once a toy, is today a real instrument with complex 50-note chromatic models now available.

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TINY MICROPHONES HELP SINGER MAKE RECORD (Jul, 1933)

TINY MICROPHONES HELP SINGER MAKE RECORD
Miniature microphones, placed on a singer’s chest and forehead, as shown above, supplement standard equipment in making electrical transcriptions at a Los Angeles, Calif., studio. By this method, the originator says, it is possible to make a record that sounds even better than the voice of the performer in person, since the small microphones pick up tones undis-torted by faulty nose or mouth technique.

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Ten-Foot FIDDLES and Two-Story HARPS (Jun, 1938)

Ten-Foot FIDDLES and Two-Story HARPS

HOBBYIST BUILDS FREAK INSTRUMENTS FOR WORLD’S ODDEST ORCHESTRA

By EDWIN TEALE

FIDDLES with three necks instead of one; a harp so large you can play it from a second-story window ; a fourteen-foot bass viol, the biggest in the world; combined harps and fiddles which require two musicians to operate—such are the musical curiosities that Arthur K. Ferris, a landscape gardener of Flanders, N. J., has produced in his spare time. Eventually, he hopes to assemble a vast oddity orchestra comprising 126 unusual instruments.

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Bone Fone (Nov, 1980)

Bone Fone

A new concept in sound technology may revolutionize the way we listen to stereo music.

You’re standing in an open field. Suddenly there’s music from all directions. Your bones resonate as if you’re listening to beautiful stereo music in front of a powerful home stereo system.

But there’s no radio in sight and nobody else hears what you do. It’s an unbelievable experience that will send chills through your body when you first hear it.

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The coming record revolution: digital discs (Nov, 1981)

The coming record revolution: digital discs

A laser “reads” the compact, no-wear disc to deliver superior hi-fi

By LEONARD FELDMAN

Tokyo, Japan

A Sony technician slipped a small disc into the slot of a player no larger than a portable cassette machine. I noticed the record’s shiny surface broke light into rainbow colors. Seconds later I was bathed in rich, wide-ranging stereo music that sounded better than anything I’d ever heard from discs or tapes.

Sony Corporation’s Dr. Toshi Doi, a leading digital-systems designer, explained that this was a true digital record: Information stored as number codes on its surface was being converted into music. Instead of grooves, this disc had an optical track “read” by a laser beam. I heard absolutely no surface noise or distortion and no pitch fluctuations from the spinning disc. Dynamic range, or the difference between the loudest and softest musical sounds, was awesome.

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Horns Made from Tree Trunks Give Odd Musical Tones (Feb, 1938)

Horns Made from Tree Trunks Give Odd Musical Tones
Horns hollowed out of tree trunks are used by-native musicians in the Tyrol region of Austria. The novel instruments, said to imitate the tone of a cello, are fitted with stops so that they can play all the notes of the scale. Tree bark is left on the horns in the belief that it has a softening effect on the tones of the instruments.

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