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The Funny and Whimsical Sounds of the Kazoo

Jun 3, 2008
Kazoos are one of the easiest instruments to play; even the design is fairly simple. It creates a buzzing sound when a person hums into it. There is nothing on this instrument that will help to change the pitch or the sound; this is done by the person humming into it. As the person changes their humming, the sound through the kazoo will be altered as well. Some people can find it difficult to play this instrument properly because they take the instruction to hum too literally. To get the best sound out of the kazoo, the person has to more or less speak into the instrument, which makes a harder vocalization and makes a stronger sound that will work through the kazoo.

This simple little instrument that is a popular toy for many young children has a long history. Many people are unaware of the kazoo's origins. Instruments similar to the kazoo originated from Africa, where it was used for hundreds of years for many different purposes. Not only were the instruments used in many rituals and ceremonies, they were also used when hunting. Different ones would mask the sound of someone's voice and some would have the ability to imitate different animals who they were trying to hunt.

It was not until the 1800s when the modern kazoo, which is what people are familiar with today, was invented by an African American known as Alabama Vest. It was not long after this that metal kazoos were being made in New York. From there, the instrument grew in popularity. One of the few acoustic instruments that were created in the United States, the kazoo was one that anyone could afford and learn how to play without too much trouble. The kazoo has never been an overly expensive instrument, and has been constructed out of many different materials, including wood, metal and plastic.

Even today the kazoo continues to be a popular instrument that is enjoyed by many people around the world. The kazoo is even played professionally in comedy music and in jug bands. Its popularity is probably due to the ease in playing this particular instrument. Though it is quite popular, it is often regarded as more of a toy for children, though there are many older people who still play the instrument. It is not one that people will often think of when choosing an instrument to play, probably because it is not one that is often used in modern day music.

There is, however, a place for it anywhere that someone can fit it in. It is an easy instrument with an interesting sound that can find its place in many genres of music; it is just a matter of writing music that will include it. Of course, there is always the option of someone creating their own tunes. One might not choose the kazoo as their primary instrument for their musical career, but many will choose to have one to play for fun or when it fits in with whatever song they are participating in.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant for used CDs, autographed CDs, and used musical instruments. You can find the best marketplace for used CDs, autographed CDs, and used musical instruments at these sites for used funny CDs, autographed cartoon CDs, and used Kazoos.
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