Song of the Week: Shake Shake Band (And DIY Musical Instruments!)

Song of the Week

SOTW – Shake-Shake Band
(And DIY Musical Instruments)

Why hello there! I hope you are reading this in your pajamas. This week I thought the most helpful thing to write about would be some At Home activities to occupy your At Home kids, and what could be a better fit than making your own musical instruments?!

The thing about DIY kids’ instruments is there hasn’t been a single good idea that hasn’t already been written about one million times before. So instead of trying to reinvent the paper-plate tambourine, I curated an extensive list of the best “make your own instrument” videos I could find for you to easily peruse here! There are a lot of tutorials in the webiverse that demonstrate how to make instruments that look good, but don’t sound like anything. All of the videos on this list actually make great sound, which is the whole point of an instrument! I also included time stamps for any videos demonstrating multiple instruments, and any specific tools you might need like a hot glue gun for each. I hope you enjoy!!

Before you get lost in the land of DIY, let’s talk about the perfect song to use for your perfect new instruments – "Shake Shake Band". The original version of this song is called “Don’t You Hurry Worry Me” from the Bahamas. The lyrics urge you not to stress, and to enjoy the calm, slow pace of island time. I literally couldn’t think up a more perfect song for the current ball-of-anxiety state that many of us (including me) are stuck in! So close your eyes, imagine the sound of the waves, the smell of the sand, take a deep breath, and then channel that inner peace into making some awesome instruments with your kids, on island time. 

*Tip – once you make your instruments, don’t forget you can stream "Shake Shake Band" right here on our website on your The Music Class app if you’re enrolled in class

This is the video I recommend starting with – she does a great job of quickly explaining how DIY instruments work!

00:01 Introduction to most basic pitch changing instrument using a cup and rubber band
02:17 Straw, balloon, cardboard tube horn
03:02 Small rubber band guitar
04:04 Tennis ball container pitch changing string instrument
05:25 Cardboard tube, fishing line pitch changing instrument
06:45 Large rubber band guitar



The basics - Two adorable kids teach you how to make adorable shakers


Science of sound video - How to make a super simple harmonica
(He uses tongue-depressors, but you can also use popsicle sticks!)


Another cute kid tutorial!

0:38 Monkey drum - Hot glue gun and balloons needed
2:20 Bottle cap castanets - Hot glue gun needed
3:45 Bell bracelet – Small bells needed



4 quick DIY instruments made with mostly paper, cardboard and glue

00:01 Maracas
02:47 Rain stick
5:17 Paper plate tambourine – small bells needed
6:20 Monkey Drum – balloons needed



Simple instruments using household tools (raid the toolbox)

00:01 Wrench and Styrofoam cup xylophone
00:50 Large nail and rope xylophone
01:34 Cardboard tube guitar



DIY Paper Xylophone – Only paper, pencil, string, glue, tape and scissors needed!


DIY Rain Stick – Using a cardboard tube, nails, rice, beans, and tape


DIY Timpani Drum – Using plastic bottles, chopsticks, a glue gun and clothing iron


DIY Pan Flute – Pitch perfect and made out of plastic straws! (If you still have any lying around)

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