Boomwhackers | Tuned Tubes

Here we have Boomwhackers and related accessories. Boomwhackers evolved at a time when junk bands and performers using instruments made from recycled materials were very popular. Among other methods, gas pipes or various cast-offs from plumbers were cut to length to produce different pitches when struck on an open end. Schools, meanwhile, created their own junk bands as a cheap way to simultaneously promote creativity and encourage recycling. However, creating a custom kit was labor-intensive, leaving a niche for boomwhackers, which are premade and mass-produced.

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Boomwhacker Inventor

American Craig Ramsell reportedly came up for the idea for his boomwhackers in 1994 while at home recovering from radiation therapy. While cutting cardboard tubes into shorter lengths for recycling he happened to notice the different pitches resulting from the different lengths and decided to investigate their creative potential. He experimented with various plastics before settling on plastic mailing tubes. He and his partner, wife Monnie Ramsell, formed DrumSpirit as a sole proprietorship to market the tubes. The original plastic boomwhackers were first produced in 1995. The current version, which is far more durable than the earlier prototype, was released in 1997.

Ramsell started Whacky Music, Inc. in 1998, marketing a wider variety of boomwhacker sets and materials. Boomwhackers are now available to span 3½ chromatic octaves. (The addition of the Octavator Tube Caps in 1999 allowed for the third lower octave.)

In July, 2009 the Sedona, Arizona-based Whacky Music, Inc., sold its interests to Rhythm Band Instruments LLC of Fort Worth, Texas, through an asset purchase agreement. Boomwhackers are made in the USA and distributed internationally by Rhythm Band Instruments