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The Beatmaker

by Pauline L.

The instrument I made for the assignment is called the Beatmaker. I was just fooling around with some recyclables and clean paper plates, and I ended up making the Beatmaker. The Beatmaker is a string and percussion instrument. The Beatmaker has a low pitch, percussion-wise. With the strings on the instrument the pitch is able to be high and low. The cool thing is, is that you can change the volume of the Beatmaker by hitting it softer or harder. Its tone quality is very well controlled. It's got great resonance.

The Beatmaker is made of Styrofoam, paper plates, a soup can, and 3 rubber bands. I put it together by using staples and hot glue. I decorated the instrument with some markers of mine. I found the rubber bands in my utensil drawer. I got the paper plates from my Aunt's house. I got the glue and staples from my house. Everything else was found in the recycling bin. The soup can was difficult to decorate so I just left it as it was. The paper plates have flowers on them. I didn't have any staples so I got some from the store. I had to decorate over 4 paper plates to get the right flower that I wanted.

The first thing I did to make my instrument was to get all the materials I needed. Then, I colored the 2 plates and filled one with Styrofoam pieces. After I did that, I stapled the plates together so it would make a shattering- type sound. Then I took a soup can and rubber bands. I wrapped the rubber bands around the can so it was make a plucking sound. I glue- gunned the can on top of the plates right side up so I could still scratch it and shake it. Those are the basic steps I took to build my instrument. My parents were getting ready for a party and work so they really didn't help me. It was fun making my instrument.
To play my instrument you pluck the rubber bands up. Tighten them or loosen them to make higher or lower pitches. You can scratch the ridges of the can to make a scratching sound. You can shake the instrument to make a shattering sound. Then hit the paper plates to make a banging sound.

In conclusion, I've had fun making the Beatmaker. I loved learning about how sound works. I liked coloring the most. It's fun to color because it brings out my feelings. I also love the way colors look. Flowers are my favorite things to draw. I learned in making my instrument that every object has their own sound and if you put them together they make a great sound. Moving things around on an object can make a totally different sound.