I find it really strange that musical instruments have remained basically unchanged over many past decades.  Just look how much phones, automobiles, and a zillion other things have progressed, but musical instruments have not only remained unchanged, but it seems there aren’t any NEW ones being invented.  Are we living in an unchanged industry?

Granted, I’m sure there have been some new inventions, but I’m referring to instruments that have become widely accepted and popularly played.  Remember the Chapman Stick?  Even that one fizzled out.

Large marching bands have contained essentially the same instruments for over a hundred years, and produce 99% of the same sound, even if their tunes change.  And classical orchestras have used nearly identical instruments for the past 400 years.  Maybe the situation is that perfection was already attained way back then, so there is no need to change anything, but I still find this unusual.

In the 1920’s many small jazz groups heavily utilized clarinets, trumpets, and banjos, now all considered “auxiliary” instruments.  Then in the 30’s and 40’s the scene totally changed as big bands with tons of horns took over.  Then it totally changed again in the mid 50’s as early rock arrived.  This era saw guitar, bass, and drums as the key ingredients in most every band.  Today, 70 years later, these same three instruments are STILL the core.  From garage groups to club bands to popular recording acts, they remain the dominate three, with keys or sax as additives.  I find it extremely odd that this configuration has remained the same since 1955!

Concerning the SOUND these three instruments produce, I’d say it is about the same as when electric guitars and basses first became popular.  Have the sound of amplifiers really changed that much over time?  And drum sets still look and sound pretty much identical to the ones of 100 years ago.  Amazing.

Speaking of drums, because it is essentially a non-noted instrument, and drum sets all sound nearly the same, at least to the public, are there any creative drummers who make their OWN set using completely different items?  There would be much more diversity in  music if the percussion didn’t always use the same sounding snare, tom toms, and cymbals.  I’m saying if different items were banged upon, the tunes would have much more of their own identity.

Bottom line:  My point is that even though the SYYLE of music has changed throughout the past 100 years, the instruments creating that music have not changed.  Does anyone else find this strange?  Anyone have an idea for a NEW instrument?