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The Tea pot as a musical instrument

motleyjust 27 Jan 12 - 03:27 PM
GUEST,PG Lipton 27 Jan 12 - 03:57 PM
GUEST,999 27 Jan 12 - 04:11 PM
GUEST,PG Lipton 27 Jan 12 - 04:49 PM
gnu 27 Jan 12 - 05:21 PM
GUEST,leeneia 28 Jan 12 - 11:37 AM
GUEST,pete from seven stars link 28 Jan 12 - 12:09 PM
GUEST,John Foxen 28 Jan 12 - 01:40 PM
GUEST,David E. 28 Jan 12 - 01:43 PM
GUEST,josepp 28 Jan 12 - 03:01 PM
GUEST,roderick warner 28 Jan 12 - 04:32 PM
GUEST,Tom Parish 28 Jan 12 - 04:54 PM
maeve 28 Jan 12 - 05:12 PM
GUEST,Canberra Chris 29 Jan 12 - 12:40 AM
EBarnacle 29 Jan 12 - 10:43 AM
terrier 29 Jan 12 - 11:15 AM
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Subject: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: motleyjust
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 03:27 PM

Pick up an empty tea pot, take off the lid, hum or sing into the spout. Size and shape makes a difference in the resonance. T-pots with liquid in them do not have as much resonance (not to mention the possibility of getting it spilled on yourself)

I'm still experimenting with using a membrane on it.

This was just an ordinary purchased tea pot, but I am looking into making some, possibly with more than one spout or other openings. Also looking into using one as combination kazoo/udu.

I haven't tried the tea kettle yet, as it had hot water in it at the time (because I was making tea).


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,PG Lipton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 03:57 PM

Ah, the lost art of tea potting! Apparently it was a thriving culture in the 18th century when the blind tea potter Seamus Nambarrie wandered Ireland and entertained the masses with his mastery of the aforesaid delph vessel.

Contemporary accounts tell of him playing "Polly Put the Kettle On", "Tea For Two", "Autumn Leaves", "Leaf(ing) On a Jet Plane', "The Leaf(ing) of Liverpool" and other stirring airs.

Who was the maker of your instrument? Is it in concert pitch? Do you make your own reeds? Do you make your own tea? Do you prefer loose tea or teabags? These may seem like mundane questions to those without any knowledge of tea potting but to those of us who live, breathe and drink tea, they're the burning questions we need answers to.

Do you play in sessions? I would imagine the tea pot would sound good with spoons.

Of course, most tea potters who master the instrument eventually move on to the tea urn. It's a much more demanding instrument but there's nothing quite like a tea urn marching band.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,999
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 04:11 PM

"Of course, most tea potters who master the instrument eventually move on to the tea urn."

That's because it's much easier to urn a living that way.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,PG Lipton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 04:49 PM

Urn a living? Professionalism raises its ugly head again.

Tea potters value the amateur ethos and generally decline payment for their art (apart from the odd chocolate digestive biscuit).

The main problem, I find, is being turned away from pubs. Guitar players have no problem carrying their guitar cases into such establishments but when I push my china cabinet in, I'm told there's no room.

And don't get me started on that Brewin' MacColl!


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: gnu
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 05:21 PM

Lipton... I assume You are biased to a tea.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 11:37 AM

You should post this technique to the current thread on "How can I sing louder?"


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,pete from seven stars link
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 12:09 PM

this thread is gonna cause a stir-better add some sweeteners into the pot!


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,John Foxen
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 01:40 PM

Already a bias towards china tea pots has raised its ugly head.
These are of course instruments for mere amateurs.
Professionals always preferred enamel pots as these were the standard in Tin Pan Alley.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,David E.
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 01:43 PM

"Even my old kettle is whistling the blues for you..."


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,josepp
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 03:01 PM

Anything can be a musical instrument. Believe it or not, I once saw a punk band where the lead singer played a Rubik's Cube.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,roderick warner
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 04:32 PM

Whack a contact mike on it and wire it up to a delay/reverb - could be interesting...


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,Tom Parish
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 04:54 PM

Chainsaws have a very unique timbre too and can achieve a variety of pitches. But it is difficult to play in crowded settings.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: maeve
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 05:12 PM

Interesting...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jpinlac/5668094820/

http://www.noisytoys.com/interviews/images062705/DSCN0910.jpg


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: GUEST,Canberra Chris
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 12:40 AM

If you do put some water in it, and then tip it back so that the water partly covers the inside of the spout, it will produce when you hum into the spout a warbling effect, or for us Aussies a didgeridoo effect with a larger pot. Amount of water, angle of spout etc vary the sound. It is advisable to remember to blow not suck, or you might get a lungful of water. This is on the same principle as the little ceramic bird warblers we had as kids like a whistle that you would put a bit of water in.

The pot lid also makes a wa-wa mute, which combined with the water-warble allows for some interesting combined effects.

The last mute I saw in action was the excellent Australian Youth Orchestra doing Shostakovich's 10th Symphony, which featured a tuba larger than the lass playing it. While this was diverting enough in itself, at a dramatic point she produced a kind of huge shiny UFO also bigger than her, and proceed with the showmanship and timing of a magician to insert it into the bell of the tuba, a feat only just physically possible. While Shostakovich no doubt had keenly intended the musical effect of the shift in tone, he had probably not intended the audience to be transfixed by the consequent spectacle for the previous eight bars.

Such the delights of unconventional instrumentation.

Cheers, Chris


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: EBarnacle
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 10:43 AM

Count on an Aussie to bring the subject around to bars.


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Subject: RE: The Tea pot as a musical instrument
From: terrier
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 11:15 AM

I dont have a Tuba but a Baby Burco would probably help with the bass line.


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