November 24, 2013

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The Otamatone: Japan’s Greatest Invention?

otamatoneI dabble at playing instruments: piano, guitar, xylophone. And I’m excited to get my hands on this: the Otamatone ($36, pictured).

Created by the wacky, genius brains of Maywa Denki (brothers Masamichi and Nobumichi Tosa), this musical instrument is shaped like a note (an eighth note, if you want to be exact). By pressing and/or sliding your finger along the neck, you can change the pitch; you can also change the pitch of any sound by opening and closing the face’s mouth. (I know, it sounds abstract. Here’s a video.)

This is just one of the fun, bizarre, delightfully weird inventions of Maywa Denki. There’s also the Chihuahua Whistle, which has a name that is pretty much accurate to what it does. If you really want to get your mind blown, see Nobumichi Tosa play the Star Spangled Banner on the JUMBO Otamatone.

I know what I want for Christmas!

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