day 18 – junk band

Ready to make some music? When you empty a small plastic jar or pill bottle, let the kids help you funnel (cone of paper) in some rice, dried lentils, stones, etc. to make a shaker. Different ‘rattlers’ in different containers make different sounds. My favourite is a small handful of rice in one of those red and yellow ETA B-B-Q sauce bottles. With the ‘woven’ base, they already look like maracas. A strip of sticky tape will secure lids if you’re worried about little kids swallowing things.

Add a pair of sticks or chopstick ‘clackers’, saucepan-lid cymbals, a bucket or empty tin for a drum, and cardboard-tube trumpets and you’ve got a band. Now you can sing songs and make music together. Give yourself a name and be ready to perform for anyone who walks through the door, though this is a good outside activity because it’s pretty raucous. If you put out a hat your band may even make some money.

Rain sticks make a wonderful addition to your instrument collection but these take a little time to make. Let’s leave that for another post. In the meantime you could set about gathering the following: a cardboard tube, the longer the better, as many unwanted screws as you can find, and tape of any kind. I assume you’ve got rice.

Published by Dr Toni Risson

Dr Toni Risson is a storyteller and a cultural historian who has penned everything from children’s picture books to a PhD on the Magic of Lollies. An expert on the Greek cafe phenomenon, Toni curated Meet Me at the Paragon for the State Library of Queensland, and her latest book, Brisbane’s Greek Cafes: A Million Malted Milks, was a finalist in the 2019 Queensland Literary Awards. Having encountered the elegant Paragon Cafe in Katoomba as a child, Toni developed a fascination with silky oak panelling, bevelled mirrors and Art Deco wall lights long before she understood the stories behind Australia's iconic Greek cafe. She continues to document our lost café culture.

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