Today I was the privileged recipient of a morning serenade from my 6 year-old son who was having an impromptu concert with his kazoo. He played a medley that included a wide variation of improvised material, interspersed with some recognizable numbers such as Jingle Bells, Robot Parade (by They Might Be Giants), and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. The ever evolving repertoire was accompanied by a joyful dance and mini-parade around the house.
It was a truly precious moment, and in my son's mind there is no time like the present to express yourself through music, even at 8am. Of course I am also thankful that my neighbour who rents the suite below is very tolerant and just happens to adore my children.
The kazoo is wonderful - just hum any melody into it and - VOILA! - instant gratification achieved through the blissful art of improvised humming amplified by joyful vibrations. You can even use a comb and some wax paper to achieve the same effect.
It is the ultimate egalitarian instrument, inherently uplifting and accessible to almost anyone. It makes any song sound happy - just try playing Love Will Tear Us Apart, Smells Like Teen Spirit or any other angst fueled musical anthem with a kazoo and hear it transformed into a rapturous call to embrace the silliness and absurdity of life - I dare you!
Also - for anyone interested, I have included a diagram that shows the inner workings of this fine & complex instrument, (courtesy of Manchester College);