Top 10 Unusual Instruments
Learning to play a musical instrument is one of the most rewarding pastimes you can undertake, whether you decide to play the piano, the guitar or drums. All those hours of practice and hard work soon start to pay off as you begin to produce sweet sounding music on your instrument of choice.
Once you’ve conquered your instrument, though, how about having a go on the ukelin, stalacpipe organ or Gravikord next? If you fancy playing a unique instrument that is capable of generating a truly individual sound, you should take a look at these 10 unusual devices for inspiration.
Not exactly convenient to reach let alone play, the Great Stalacpipe Organ is an incredible instrument that is situated in the heart of the Luray Caverns in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. Invented by Leland Sprinkle, a mathematician from Springfield in 1954, the organ expands across three and a half acres, with the sound happening when the stalactites are tapped electronically via rubber-ended mallets.
The music comes from the sparks created by these coils which stand at 7 feet high. Each one is able to send their sparks more than 12 feet.
Invented in 1986 by Robert Grawi, the Gravikord is an electric double harp modelled on the 21 string West African instrument called Kora. This instrument is made of welded stainless steel tubing and consists of 24 nylon strings.
A cross between the Hawaiian ukulele and the violin, the Ukelin has 16 strings and 4 organ chords, and can be played held in one hand with the bow in the other or laid down with a bow in each hand.
Similar to the eleventh century invention the Hurdy Gurdy, the Kaisatsuko was invented by Yuichi Onoue of Tokyo, Japan. The instrument uses a small hand crank to spin a nylon wheel which acts like a mechanical bow.
Yes, the humble and sometimes savage tool, the saw can be harmonious as well as effective. Alfred Schnittke used the musical saw in many of his works, and the noise it makes is said to be not dissimilar to a woman’s voice.
This long wooden wind instrument creates a unique sound. Traditionally used by the Aboriginal people of Northern Australia, its origins go back around 40,000 years.
With its name taken from the Italian word “armonia”, meaning harmony, this instrument is made from glass bowls that advance in size – the bigger the bowl, the deeper the pitch created. The mechanical version of this was invented by Benjamin Franklin.
Played by the wind, this harp gets its name from the Greek god of wind Aeolus, and was traditionally used as a decoration in the home during the Renaissance period. The wind makes the harp vibrate and produce melodic sounds.
This 5 string double bass has 29 sympathetic and 4 drone settings, and produces a melodic range with a sensitive sound.