How do you choose a musical instrument? There are so many out there. We have taken a look at some of the more unusual instruments available at Take it away shops to help you find something as unique as you are.

Your choice of instrument can say so much about you, the different instrument families require a desire to focus on melody, harmony or rhythm to varying degrees.When you master an unusual instrument, your musical skills become invaluable to orchestras, ensembles and the media, who might struggle to find the sought-after Subcontrabass trumpet player, for example!

Find out about some more unconventional instruments in our list below, and remember, all are available with a 9 month Take it away interest-free loan (minimum spend £100)

1. Oil Can Guitar, available at Gough & Davy

By Bohemian. ‘Moonshine’ model, £279 or pay in 9 monthly instalments of £27.90 with Take it away

Bohemian’s motor oil can guitars are inspired by improvised constructions long-used by South African street musicians. The small body shape allows increased access to higher frets for super high notes. These guitars are harmonically rich, with the pickups and metal bodies of the instrument melding into a beautifully open, airy tone (and a hint of metallic twang). They are light and sustainable, using less lumber than a traditional guitar, with the necks coming from sustainable forests or reclaimed woods, and the bodies made partially from recycled materials.

Gough & Davy says:

“This guitar is renowned for producing a clean bluesy twang that both hobbyists and professionals can rock out on.”

A custom Bohemian Moonshine electric guitar
2. The Xaphoon, aka Pocket Sax, available at Hobgoblin

£109 or pay in 9 monthly instalments of £10.90 with Take it away

The first xaphoon, made out of bamboo in 1972, was a spontaneous effort by Brian Wittman, a Hawaiian saxophonist and multi-instrumentalist, to create an instrument for a young child who liked the sound of the saxophone.  Made commercially available in 1975, the xaphoon is a chromatic keyless single-reed woodwind instrument. It has a closed cylindrical bore (the body) and a slightly flared bell (the end). The xaphoon has a full chromatic range of two octaves, and overblows at the twelfth like the clarinet. (via Wikipedia)

Hobgoblin says:

“The Pocket Sax is a quirky, portable little instrument in the key of C. It uses a Tenor Saxophone reed to produce that warm Sax sound. It might even fit in a big pocket!“

Pocket Sax
3. Tenori-On, limited availability at Yamaha Music London

The result of a collaboration between Media Performance artist Toshio Iwai and Yamaha, the Tenori-On is a performance instrument with a visual display comprised of a matrix of LED switches.

Yamaha Music says:

“By operating and interacting with the LED buttons and the light they produce, the Tenori-On can be played intuitively, creating a ‘visible music’ interface, with 16 layers. Modes can be combined and used simultaneously for rich, complex musical expression.

For DJs & producers, it is a unique performance tool enabling them to perform using MIDI and to load the Tenori-On with samples to feature within their sets.”

4. Greek Bouzouki, available at Hobgoblin

The ‘Sakis’ model 2, £509 or pay £50.90 in 9 monthly instalments with Take it away.

The Greek bouzouki is a plucked musical instrument of the lute family, called the thabouras or tambouras family, which existed in ancient Greece, usually as a three-stringed instrument. At the end of the 1950s, the four-course (tetrachordo) bouzoukia started to gain popularity, as it was easier for guitarists to play, and allowed for greater virtuosity. This helped elevate the bouzouki into a truly popular instrument capable of a wide range of musical expression. (via Wikipedia).


Hobgoblin Birmingham says:

“This model is eye-catching, with its bowl back and attractive decoration. The standard Greek tuning of CFAD is a tone lower than the top four strings on a typical guitar.

This means Guitarists can use the same chord shapes to get instant nice sounding results from the instrument. Baritone Ukulele players can also make a nice noise very quickly on the Greek Bouzouki.”

Greek Bouzouki
5. Talking Drum, available at Billy Bowman Music

By Tycoon. £65 – available using Take it away interest-free instalments as part of a purchase with a total basket value of between £100-2,500.

The Talking Drum is handcrafted from a single piece of hardwood and equipped with two goat skin heads and high tension strings. Originally used as a form of communication, this is a unique Percussion instrument of West African descent whose pitch can be altered by applying pressure to the ropes whilst being played with a specially shaped beater.

Billy Bowman Music says:

“Offering an intimate playing experience, this drum is held against the body, under the arm, and tone is controlled by squeezing the strings along the body of the drum. A great addition to any percussionist’s set-up, and a way to make unique sounds.”

Talking Drum