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Sounds from the Dumpster: Artist Turns Trash into Ear Pleasing Musical Instruments

Sounds from the Dumpster: Artist Turns Trash into Ear Pleasing Musical Instruments

Ken Butler makes musical instruments from trash

It’s safe to say that New York artist Ken Butler isn’t your average artist and musician. Sure, he can play a wide range of stringed and percussion instruments like any seasoned musician out there can do, but it’s the actual instruments he plays that set him apart.

He builds fully-functioning musical instruments out of stuff he finds in the dumpster! Legendary guitarist Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin may be more famous for playing his axe on stage, but Ken Butler can boast that he literally plays an axe!

guitarists playing axe

Ken’s been at it since the 1970s and since then has had his unique instruments on display at numerous museums, art shows and music festivals around the world.

FIND: New York City Trash Container Rentals

His very first creation was built using a hatchet that he found to be the exact size of a violin; in fact, it fit in a violin box perfectly (see the video below). Just add some strings, tune it up and you got yourself a beautiful sounding stringed instrument made from trash.

He makes guitars, violins/violas, pianos and much more. It’s amazing to see some of the items he pulls right from dumpsters and transforms into usable instruments. Some of the trash he turns into musical goodness includes broken skateboards, hockey sticks, crutches, bike wheels, checker board and even guns.

He definitely sees trash in a different light than most of us. Next time you clean out your garage or attic, think about some of the creative things you can do with your junk. musical instruments made from trash-Ken Butler

If you don’t want to watch the whole video (about 8 min.), fast forward to about the 5 minute mark to see him tinker with a hockey stick/tennis racket doohickey that plays a wide range of cool sounds.

Via: Open Culture
Images via: Ken Butler