A man in Atlanta confounded doctors and specialists for over a year with a condition which did not respond to any therapies. After he mentioned that he played clarinet in a Dixieland jazz band, researchers examined his instrument and discovered Exophiala fungus inside his mouthpiece mcgillmusic.com/articles/…
Paul McCartney's first Hofner bass used on iconic Beatles recordings was stolen from him at Twickenham Film Studios in 1969 and has never been found. This particular model was only produced for four months and is one of the most sought after instruments in rock history hofner.com/lost-bass
Band directors look at body type and personality to determine the most suitable instruments for their students. An important trait for mastering the β€œvery intricate” Oboe is β€œabove average intelligence” cnn.com/2013/09/09/living…
The Travelling Wilbury's first album was recorded at a house where the five guys casually hung out, free form jamming on acoustic guitars with no other instruments. George Harrison then took those tapes to his studio, remastered them, added other instruments and fine polished the album. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tra…
Dave Grohl wrote and recorded an entire album by himself, singing and playing each instrument in the studio. He chose the name Foo Fighters to hide his identity. After a record label picked it up he needed to recruit members to perform the songs live. Thus the Foo Fighters were created. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foo…
Straight and proportionally spaced frets in instruments are only an approximation of "true temperament", or the type of tuning that allows perfect harmonies. A pair of inventors developed a type of guitar neck that allows for true temperament, with wobbly frets that aren't evenly spaced. pmtonline.co.uk/blog/2009…
Music lessons with the goal of learning to play an instrument should start between age six and nine. pbs.org/parents/thrive/wh…
Although Adolphe Sax originally intended for the saxophone to be an orchestra instrument, this never happened. This is primarily because Sax had a few enemies in the orchestral institution since he had a constant desire to improve their wind instruments and because the saxophone lacked precision olimpusmusic.com/saxophon…
The bullet lodged inside President Garfield likely didn't cause his death. At the time, Joseph Lister's ideas about germs had been widely accepted in Europe, but American doctors were still sceptical. Garfield's doctors used unsterilised instruments, causing an infection which killed him. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jam…
A German company made orchestral instruments from Perspex in the 1930s. The string instruments were too quiet for orchestras, but the flutes and clarinets were just as good as their metal or wooden equivalents. plexiglas.de/en/applicati…
Bagpipes were the only musical instrument deemed a weapon of war by the courts because it inspired troops to battle and instilled terror into the enemy. melaniejackson.com/bagpip…
In 2006, the Worlds Tallest Man saved two dolphins by using his long arms to reach into their stomachs and pull out dangerous plastics after all other attempts to use instruments had failed. news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-…
The contrabass clarinet, also known as a pedal or elephant clarinet, has a 10-foot tube which doubles back on itself twice. However, the lowest sounding clarinet is the octocontrabass. Only one such instrument is known to have existed, but it was created only for experimental interest classicfm.com/discover-mu…
An β€œugly stick” is a traditional Newfoundland musical instrument fashioned out of household and tool shed items, typically a mop handle with bottle caps, tin cans, small bells and other noise makers. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ugl…
Leo Fender was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992: a unique achievement given that he never learned to play the instruments that he made a career of making en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leo…
The world's first combat submarine (1775) used bioluminescent fungi ("foxfire") to illuminate the navigation instruments. history.navy.mil/research…
Today I learned about the operation Squall. At the premiere of Shostakovich's 7 Symphony in sieged Leningrad, it had to prevent Germans from targeting the concert hall and to ensure that it would be quiet enough to hear the music. Commander later remarked that "we played our instrument in the symphony too" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Len…
Everything in Prince's first album was made by himself. He sang all the parts and played all the 27 instruments, including the guitars, bass, synths, drums, windchimes, piano, clavinet, and even the bongos. smithsonianmag.com/smiths…
The worlds largest pipe organ is located in Atlantic City, New Jersey. It is also the loudest musical instrument ever constructed. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boa…
The Venova is single-reeded woodwind musical instrument produced by Yamaha in 2017. It approximate the acoustic qualities of an instrument with a conical bore, such as a saxophone, and received the "Good Design Award" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ven…
Thomas Young, a brilliant polymath, is known as "The Last Man Who Knew Everything." Some of his contributions include discovering the wave theory of light, describing elasticity, inventing the tuning method of musical instruments and many more.... mathshistory.st-andrews.a…
Today I learned of the Pig Organ, an musical instrument that produces sound from pigs by poking them. Created as a response to a challenge by King Louis XI. Pigs were sorted according to size and tone which when spiked would produce a harmony or melody. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pig…
There is a silent musical composition that instructs performers not to play their instruments during the entire duration of the four and a half minute piece. npr.org/2000/05/08/107388…
Hawaiian music began in the mid 1800s, when visitors from all over came by sea to Hawai'i, bringing with them instruments such as the violin, guitar, ukulele, piano, accordion and flute. The fusion of instruments and cultures blended with Native Hawaiian chants and hymns to become a genre. surfingforlife.com/music.…
American blues musician Robert Johnson was said to have sold his soul to the devil. The story is that he went to the crossroads near a plantation at midnight and met the devil, who took his guitar, tuned it, played a few songs, and handed the guitar back, granting him mastery of the instrument. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob…
The Jiahu neolithic site in China has yielded flutes dating back to 7,000 BC – 5,000 BC that could represent the earliest playable instruments ever found. Fragments of bone flutes from this period are still playable today, and are remarkably similar to modern versions in terms of hole placement en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diz…
The most expensive musical instrument that has ever been solid is a Guqin, NOT a Cello or Violin! en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guq…
The first instrument to be played in space was a harmonica and it was used to play Jingle Bells. bbc.com/future/article/20…
Today I learned about violin mice, which are basically fancy dust bunnies. When a violin is repaired, the β€œmouse” is often placed back inside the instrument for luck. Some people even collect them. violinist.com/discussion/…
Today I learned of the Carnyx, an instrument used ceremonially and in battle by the Celtic people during the Iron Age. It played like a trumpet, though its form forced people to hoist it vertically, like a flag, to play it. Despite widespread evidence of its existence, only ten carnyces have ever been found. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car…
Today I learned of Henry Grimes, a jazz bassist who disappeared in 1970 and was presumed dead. He was found by a social worker in 2002, destitute and with no bass. After people loaned him instruments and money, he made a remarkable comeback, eventually winning a lifetime achievement award in 2016. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hen…
The name of the instrument β€œcello” is a shortened form of the original word β€œvioloncello”. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cel…
Today I learned of the fotoplayer, the all in one instrument that brought sound effects to silent movies in theaters before sound films came about in the 1920s. Though there are less than fifty remaining today, only 12 of those are playable still. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ame…
One of the Beatles #1 singles, "The Ballad of John and Yoko" were recorded with only John and Paul due to George being on a holiday and Ringo filming. When John and Paul played George and Ringo's instruments, they even referred to each other as George (on guitar) and Ringo (on drums). en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
Alan Rickman introduced the instruments on Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells II youtube.com/watch?v=uDp-x…
Gary Numan’s album, 'Savage (Songs From A Broken World)' was excluded from Billboard's dance/electronic music chart even though it was mostly recorded with electronic instruments. Gary's album outsold Calvin Harris' number one charted album 'Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1' by approximately 600 copies. musicbusinessworldwide.co…
Michael Jackson composed songs despite not playing any instruments. He would build each element of a track with his voice, so pitch perfect that studio musicians could match chords to his singing. nme.com/blogs/nme-blogs/t…
Today I learned about Circular breathing, a technique used by players of some wind instruments to produce a continuous tone without interruption. This is accomplished by breathing in through the nose while simultaneously pushing air out through the mouth using air stored in the cheeks. breathing.com/blogs/breat…
Nirvana once purposefully butchered Smells like Teen Spirit while performing live on the British TV show "Top of the Pops". The network forced them to play over a pre recorded tape which the band disliked. They proceeded to jokingly play their instruments and changed the lyrics of the song cheatsheet.com/entertainm…
Though Casio (1985) and Sharp (1986) were the first to market graphing calculators, it wasn’t until 1990, when Texas Instruments released the TI-81, that they began to hit the mainstream. At the time, most students were fine with drawing graphs on paper and educators were wary of change thehustle.co/graphing-cal…
Apollo 12 was hit by lightning twice within a minute of launch, knocking out the command module instruments, lighting up nearly every warning light on the control panel and garbling the telemetry to mission control. Earlier training simulating such a failure allowed them to restore power. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apo…
In the late 1500s, two Dutch spectacle makers stacked a number of lenses in a tube and realized that, together, they made items appear much larger than under a single magnifying glass. Because the maximum magnification was only 9x, they were more of a novelty than a scientific instrument thermofisher.com/blog/mic…
Julian Casablancas is credited for writing all lyrics and instrument parts for The Strokes' first three albums for which he offered to split all royalties with the rest of the band. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
In 2003, famous skateboarder Rodney Mullen's right femur and hip began to fuse together. Doctors were wary of treatment, so Mullen used homemade instruments to attack the scar tissue and eventually one night, while twisting himself within the wheelwell of his truck, broke free. vogue.com/projects/134562…
H. Jon Benjamin (Archer, Bob's Burgers) released and performed on an experimental jazz album despite expressing a distaste for jazz and not knowing how to play any instruments. It's titled 'Well I Should Have... *learned to play the piano'. news.avclub.com/exclusive…
Lawrence Moore Cosgrave, a Canadian Colonel and diplomat, signed on behalf of Canada on the Japanese Instrument of Surrender. However, Cosgrave signed the document in the wrong place (on the line for France) forcing all subsequent signatories to sign in the wrong place as well. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law…
Edgar Winter Invented the Keyboard Strap to Allow for his Multi-Instrument and High Energy Performances (1st evolution of the Key-tar or Gi-board according to Beck) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edg…
Sugar can twist light, and has been used in calibrating instruments that detect the rotation of light. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pol…
Today I learned about Marvin Creamer an American college professor who became the first person to sail around the world without any navigational equipment. He relied on the sun, stars and moon to guide him instead of a compass, sextent, clock or any other type of navigational instrument. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mar…
On Prince's debut album, For You, he played every instrument on the album: 27 in all. Some notable mentions include, the electric guitar, clavinet, congas, waterdrums, electric piano, finger cymbals, hand claps and several other synthesizers. bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/articl…

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