5 Creative Musical Instruments You Didn’t Know Existed

by Tim Redford, Dec 15, 2017 . 3 min read

5 Creative Musical Instruments You Didn’t Know Existed

When you start thinking outside the box about the way you make music, you can come up with some strange ideas that only work on paper. Here are 5 creative musical instruments that people not only dreamed up, but built in real life!

5. Bandura

I was recently in Kyiv and walked past a busker playing a Bandura, the traditional Ukrainian instrument with too many strings to count. I had to stop for a few minutes to listen, the long corridor of the metro station made it sound like we were in a concert hall.

The Ukrainian group “B&B” in this video features a Bandura and a full band covering Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Creative musical instruments

4. Zither

One of Germany’s most creative musical instruments has ancient roots leading back to China. It’s like a big flat cutting board laid on a table or the player’s lap. It has 30 or 40 strings which can be plucked with your fingers or a pick.

If you’ve never seen a Zither before, why not start with 3 at the same time?

Creative musical instruments
 3. Igil

The Igil is a frightening idea for an instrument. Coming from Mongolia, it’s often made from a horse’s skull. This stringed instrument is played upright and bowed across like a cello. An entire genre exists consisting of music written to be played on the Igil.

The video below is of an Igil player serenading us with both his instrument and traditional Mongolian throat singing. It really picks up after the one minute mark.

Creative musical instruments
 2. The 8 Necked Rock Ock

With 51 Strings and weighing in at a lofty 40 lbs, the Rock Ock isn’t for the faint of heart. Trying to clear this through airport security isn’t something I’d recommend, but you could make quite the impression at a local gig.

Rock band Biohazard took it for its maiden voyage!

The 8 Necked Rock Ock

1. Pikasso

A jazz artist commissioned a Canadian Luthier to build a guitar with “as many strings as possible”. Well I have to say, mission accomplished. This creative beast is aptly named as it really does look like something out of one of Picasso’s famous paintings.

It sounds like a bass, acoustic guitar, and harp all at the same time. Watch as Pat Methany captivates an audience with his improvisation.

Pikasso Guitar
 You won’t be finding any of these instruments at your local guitar shop or on Amazon, but they exist, and they’re proof of what’s possible when we follow our creative instincts.

Do you think a Roadie 2 can tune one or all of those instruments?

 



Get our free Alternate Tunings Guide!
Submit

Check out some other similar articles

Tuning a 24 String Bass…How long does it take?!

For some people, it’s quite difficult to tune an instrument even with the use of a tuner.

Randall Nashleanas
Jun 7, 2019 . 3 min read

Around 4000 years ago, someone invented a gadget which could create sound using strings forged from the gut of a cow. As time progressed,

Randall Nashleanas
May 31, 2019 . 4 min read

In the history of the world, thousands of different Gods have been and are still worshipped today impacting millions all over the globe. Yngwie Malmsteen, Greg Howe, and Jason Becker

Randall Nashleanas
May 17, 2019 . 5 min read

The world is full of strange things, but did you know it is also full of strange strings? The lute and harp are

Frederik Nielsen
Apr 18, 2018 . 4 min read

Why should you care about the kind of wood used for your fretboard when everyone knows that the body is what really matters?

Frederik Nielsen
Apr 9, 2018 . 4 min read

They don’t make ‘em like they used to. No, I’m not talking about rock stars, although now that I think of it – it goes for rock stars too.

Frederik Nielsen
Apr 5, 2018 . 4 min read

Few people like the sound of cat song. Most people, on the other hand, love the sound of catgut strings – especially when they’re attached to a ukulele.

Frederik Nielsen
Mar 26, 2018 . 5 min read

“Cheap” is relative. The word “cheap” can mean two things: worthless, or just… cheaper. It’s possible to get a good deal

Frederik Nielsen
Mar 19, 2018 . 4 min read

Remember the electric hurdy-gurdy? Here’s another one of those. If you know your country music you will already know that the pedal steel guitar

Frederik Nielsen
Mar 12, 2018 . 4 min read

The K in K-pop music stands for Korean, but don’t tell a K-pop fan you didn’t already know that.

Frederik Nielsen
Feb 20, 2018 . 4 min read

If you frequent European folk festivals, or have just been binge-watching Black Sails,

Frederik Nielsen
Feb 12, 2018 . 3 min read
We'll be bringing you recommended tabs and plenty of interesting quotes from guitar legends along the way!