Skip to content

Ask General Kang: What musical instrument should I learn?

Ask General KangI think it depends a bit on where your talents lie.

For example, can you carry a tune? Then maybe a kazoo. Or even a harmonica if you’ve got some talent. If you have less musical aptitude, perhaps you should learn to play a tambourine or bodhran — that’s a kind of large tambourine without the little jingles around the edge — no, never mind, if I have to explain what it is, you probably won’t be able to play it and there are already enough of those. Beware, you’ll still need a sense of rhythm to play any percussion instrument.

Unless you’re playing a Tragdorian Mega-Drum, which are pretty automated, though you still need some kind of primate to activate the boom-boom switch on it. I once kitted out an entire troop of ultra-chimps with Tragdorian Mega-Drums instead of plasma weapons, and was pleasantly surprised to see them take their objective (a major city on the Planet Bluehairia) in record time. Of course the poor bastards were wiped out in our assault on Metalhead XII (they have a very high tolerance for Mega-Drum percussion there.)

What about bagpipes?

Are you insane? You want to be able to play with other people don’t you?

Next time: If it’s okay to have love in a time of cholera, what if do we do in a time of bird flu

pirate therapy


This piece appears in my new collection Pirate Therapy & Other Cures; you can win a copy in a Goodreads giveaway that ends May 15.

Add me as a friend while you’re there!

Alltop loves the ol’ triangle! Originally published September, 2006.