NAMM Oddities 1998 The Other Room
Guitars Goodies Percussion Instruments Synthesizers Techno Geek Toys Amplification You Figure It Out

How about a six string fretted violin? Wood Violins (Mark Wood's company) has them. You can get them with 4-6 strings and fretless versions too. If you're a guitarist you can tune it in standard guitar tuning and give it a whirl.

Wood Violins
P.O. Box 2074
Port Washington, New York, USA
(516) 767-6677


And now for the bass players that might have felt left out in the previous item, here's the Bass O Lin.This is an instrument that's happy being played like an electric bass, upright bass and as a bowed bass. There are something like ten different playing positions between strapping it on and using it upright. There are fretted and fretless models available.

Dan Agostino
Lanoka Harbor, New Jersey, USA
or (914)942-5123




If you've ever thought that you might want to try playing a didgeridoo this is great way to try it out. These guys have a whole line of fun instruments called Dijiri-tubes that are simple, functional didgeridoos. They've also got the Travel Dij that collapses and the Slide Dij that lets you change the pitch of the drone.

Sharing the booth was a fellow that makes some wonderful wooden aboriginal flutes. My favorite was the dual flute, typically you would just have a one side droning while you played the other side. The one in the picture had tape covering most of the holes on the drone side.

Toot & Hoot Didgeridoos
Stevensville, Montana, USA



Stick Bass

A close up of a stick string and a fretrod.
(I really just took this shot to impress them with the macro lens on my new digital camera)

The Chapman Stick is far from what I would consider an oddity but even after thirty-odd years of having Sticks around there are still people who don't recognize them. I would hazard that most people have heard a Stick but probably didn't recognize it.

I was starting my on trek from the main hall to the South Hall when I was frozen in my tracks by the sound of a Chapman Stick. I turned around and there was Greg Howard set up and playing a solo mini-concert in the main convention lobby. As he played quite a group of people stopped to listen with more than one person trying to figure out where the non-existent sequencer was. Greg put on an incredible show.

Later on at the Stick booth I caught another extraordinary Stick player named Steve Adelson trying out the new NS Stick. This instrument is a design collaboration between Emmett Chapman and Ned Steinberger that is somewhere between a Stick and a Bass. It has eight strings and can be tapped as well as picked, plucked and slapped.

For bass players who want to stick with the tuning that they're familiar with, there is the 8-string Stick Bass. It's quite a striking instrument and would look great on stage.

Stick Enterprises
Woodland Hills, California, USA

Greg Howard

Steve Adelson & the NS Stick



The Theremin is alive and well, in fact I saw two different companies selling Theremins. This picture is from the Big Briar (Robert Moogs company) booth. They have two models, the simple black box (seen in front of the white curtain) and the full wooden case model. I recently caught Fishbone on the show Viva Variety that plays on the cable channel Comedy Central and the singer took a couple of Theremin solos on a briefcase Theremin.

Big Briar
Asheville, North Carolina, USA


NAMM Oddities '98 Home | Guitars | Other Goodies | Percussion | Instruments
Synthesizers | Techno Geek Toys | Amplification | You Figure It Out | The Other Room

Don't be surprised if you find that the product or the company you see on these pages has ceased to exist, particularly as the pages get older. One function of the NAMM Oddities is that of a historical archive of attempted products.
These web pages are not associated with or sponsored by NAMM

Send your suggestions, clarifications, rants or praise to

©1998 Barry Wood