Amani Project Instruments

Music is everywhere

Amani Project participants collaborate to make musical instruments using objects they can find in their everyday environment, prioritizing reusing items that would normally end up in the trash. See example instruments below! 

 
 Amani Project Participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania, 2017. They made instruments out of materials they found around their neighborhood. 

Amani Project Participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania, 2017. They made instruments out of materials they found around their neighborhood. 

 

Amani Project Participants in Quindío, Colombia made shakers using popcorn and used water bottles. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - EASY):

Take used water bottles and fill them one-third with either gravel, popcorn seeds, or anything small enough to cause the shaker sound. 

Amani Project participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania create tambourines using the top rim of 5-gallon buckets. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - HARD):

Materials: 5-gallon bucket, bottle caps (metal)
Tools: Saw, hammer, wire cutter, drill
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, saw the top rim off of any 5-gallon bucket. Once you have the rim separated, drill six 2-inch-long holes evenly around the rim. If no drill is available, VERY carefully use a knife to carve out the holes. 

Take a wire hanger, and using wire cutters, create six 3-inch pieces out of the hanger. If no wire cutter available, bend the wire back and forth until it breaks at 3-inch intervals. 

Using the hammer, flatten out the metal bottle caps. Drill a small hole in the middle of the bottle cap. If no hammer available, use a large rock. If no drill available, use a nail and hammer to pound a hole in the middle of the bottle cap. 

Using one of the 3-inch pieces of hanger, put the wire through the hole in the bottle cap. Slide the flattened cap into one of the holes in the bucket rim until the wire is flush against it. Bend the excess wire over the side of the top and bottom of the bucket rim until it is securely fastened. Repeat final step for remaining 5 holes. 

*if the wires slide or don't fasten securely to the bucket rim, carve a small notch on the top and bottom of the rim where the wire was bent over it. Re-bend the wire into these notches. 

 

 

Amani Project participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania create drum-sets using branches &  5-gallon buckets. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - MEDIUM HARD):

Materials: 5-gallon bucket, branch/pipe, rope/tire-strips/large rubberbands
Tools: drill or saw
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, drill a hole in the side of the 5-gallon bucket large enough to fit the branch/pipe. 

Slide the branch/pipe into the hole, making sure it doesn't hit the other side of the bucket. 

Once the bucket is on the branch/pipe, ensure the bottom of the bucket is facing up. 

Wrap the rope/tire-strip around the branch close to the opening where the branch enters the bucket. Once the rope has been wrapped around a couple of times, take the same strip and wrap it around the branch/pipe on the inside of the bucket, securing it tightly. Tie the end off inside the bucket. 

ALTERNATIVE: with the bottom of the bucket facing up, wrap the rope/tire-strip around the top edge of the bucket a couple of times. Wrap the remainder of the rope around the branch, securing it tightly. 

They also created flutes. Different tones were created by filling the bottles with different amounts of water. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - EASY):

Take any used bottle and partially fill it with water or any liquid. Fill each bottle to different levels to create various tones. Sound is created by blowing horizontally across the top opening of the bottle.  If you would like to tune the bottles, simply play a note on any instrument, and fill or pour out the liquid from the bottle to match the tone. 

They created the metal jingles by hammering bottlecaps flat. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - HARD):

Materials: 5-gallon bucket, bottle caps (metal)
Tools: Saw, hammer, wire cutter, drill
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, saw the top rim off of any 5-gallon bucket. Once you have the rim separated, drill six 2-inch-long holes evenly around the rim. If no drill is available, VERY carefully use a knife to carve out the holes. 

Take a wire hanger, and using wire cutters, create six 3-inch pieces out of the hanger. If no wire cutter available, bend the wire back and forth until it breaks at 3-inch intervals. 

Using the hammer, flatten out the metal bottle caps. Drill a small hole in the middle of the bottle cap. If no hammer available, use a large rock. If no drill available, use a nail and hammer to pound a hole in the middle of the bottle cap. 

Using one of the 3-inch pieces of hanger, put the wire through the hole in the bottle cap. Slide the flattened cap into one of the holes in the bucket rim until the wire is flush against it. Bend the excess wire over the side of the top and bottom of the bucket rim until it is securely fastened. Repeat final step for remaining 5 holes. 

*if the wires slide or don't fasten securely to the bucket rim, carve a small notch on the top and bottom of the rim where the wire was bent over it. Re-bend the wire into these notches. 

Amani Project participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania create drum-sets using branches &  5-gallon buckets. 

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - MEDIUM HARD):

Materials: 5-gallon bucket, branch/pipe, rope/tire-strips/large rubberbands
Tools: drill or saw
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, drill a hole in the side of the 5-gallon bucket large enough to fit the branch/pipe. 

Slide the branch/pipe into the hole, making sure it doesn't hit the other side of the bucket. 

Once the bucket is on the branch/pipe, ensure the bottom of the bucket is facing up. 

Wrap the rope/tire-strip around the branch close to the opening where the branch enters the bucket. Once the rope has been wrapped around a couple of times, take the same strip and wrap it around the branch/pipe on the inside of the bucket, securing it tightly. Tie the end off inside the bucket. Repeat as necessary to add more drums. 

ALTERNATIVE: with the bottom of the bucket facing up, wrap the rope/tire-strip around the top edge of the bucket a couple of times. Wrap the remainder of the rope around the branch, securing it tightly. 

Amani Project participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania create cymbals using metal plates and branches.

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - MEDIUM):

Materials: Metal plate of any kind, 2 or 3 inch screw, branch or pipe, rubber band or rope.
Tools: screwdriver
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, drill the screw through the center of the plate.

Take the branch and put it flush with the screw. Using the rubber band or rope, wrap the branch to the bottom of the screw very tightly, securing them together. If the cymbal falls off easily, find a longer screw and repeat the process. 

 

CHECK BACK FOR MORE! 

We'll keep adding the amazing instruments participants make as the Amani Project grows. If you attempt to make these instruments and find ways to improve the instructions, PLEASE LET US KNOW! We absolutely love new ideas on how to improve any of the processes. 

Amani Project participants in Bagamoyo, Tanzania create cymbals using metal plates and branches.

DIY INSTRUCTIONS (DIFFICULTY LEVEL - MEDIUM):

Materials: Metal plate of any kind, 2 or 3 inch screw, branch or pipe, rubber band or rope.
Tools: screwdriver
*Adult supervision and tools required*

Using adult supervision, drill the screw through the center of the plate.

Take the branch and put it flush with the screw. Using the rubber band or rope, wrap the branch to the bottom of the screw very tightly, securing them together. If the cymbal falls off easily, find a longer screw and repeat the process.