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Instrument - The Kazoo

What the heck is a kazoo you ask? Well it's one of the wackiest, cheapest, most bizarre sounding instruments you could ever play. You play it by using your mouth, but most people make the mistake of thinking you blow into the end. If you blow into the mouthpiece it doesn't really make a noise, it just sprays spit out the end. Yuck! Not exactly what you were expecting.

To play the kazoo, all you need to do is put your mouth on the end of it and hum your favorite tune. That's it. No musical training or talent required - so they're great for people of all ages. The noise that comes out of one of these little things is hard to describe. It's kind of a weird space-age noise. If you play it for a while it kind of makes your lips itchy from the vibrations.

The kazoo was designed in the 1840's and became very popular in the 1920's and 1930's. Today it's available in just about every color in the rainbow and can be made of plastic, metal and even wood. Some are decorated with funky designs or patterns and some come in different shapes.

Did you know that those wacky Chili Peppers play the kazoo on the song Roller Coaster? It's used in the horn-like parts of the chorus. Other kazoo users include guitar legend Jimi Hendrix, who used it on the rockin' classic Crosstown Traffic. Spot the kazoo in the guitar riff in the chorus. Other bands that play the kazoo in their tunes are Blind Melon, The Grateful Dead and probably one of your parent's favorites, The Beach Boys. Kazoos cost between $1 - $5 which makes them one of the cheapest instrument you can buy. So if you want to make some crazy noises and bug the heck out of your parents get yourself a kazoo!

Pick up a Kazoo at your local music or toy store or visit www.kazoos.com.

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