mute

Kazoo mute for a trumpet employing a mirliton device to change the instrument's timbre. Label reads: BOOSEY & Co. LTD./295 REGENT STREET/LONDON/W1. Conical shape and lacquered in royal blue. Widest part of the cone has a wire mesh held in place by a metal bracket that has an adjustable screw in the centre. The screw can be tightened to adjust the kazoo effect. Bought by the Horniman Museum as part of a set with the Clippertone trumpet.

Until the 20th century, the only brass mute in common use was the straight mute. Many developments in mute design in the 1920s were inspired by the unusual playing techniques of early jazz performers. One influential figure was Joe 'King' Oliver who often played with a kazoo in the bell of his instrument. London instrument makers responded with the Kazoo mute, which was designed to imitate this effect.

Collection Information

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