Thursday, 6 August 2009

Friday 24th July

Today we went to the Mechanical Music Museum. It was awesome! It also constitutes my earliest memory--I must've been about two the last time we went, but I can remember bits of it. I also remembered a doll shop opposite, and my parents were kinda stunned. So was I really. But I do remember going in there.

Anyway, if you ever get the chance, I highly recommend you head to this museum. It's fascinating! It doesn't look like much, I have to admit, it's all in two rooms, and one of the rooms is a shop. But the museum room is stuffed full of, well, mechanical music. It ranges from amazing boxes that you can open up, wind up, and they play fantastic music using pins and a metal comb. And the boxes are pretty stunning in themselves, before you even start playing the music from them. Then there were ones that were in effect record players with a load of little bits that got pushed down by the 'record' and played a tune. And then, and these were my favourites, they had three machines that would have been in a pub. They were early jukeboxes, and they were fantastic. They played music off a giant disk, but there was no electricity in them at all. They had bells and a xylophone type thing and drums and all sorts. Quite incredible. Then there were the gramophones and phonographs. Same principle behind each, but the gramophone used a disk while the phonograph used a cylinder (and worked better because it didn't have to change speed depending on where on the disk it was). But gramophones ended up becoming the accepted version, and now it doesn't matter that we use disks which are strictly speaking not as good, because we've got microchips that tell the CD/DVD player how fast to go using pies. There were also automatons, which were quite impressive. They were basically things that wound up and did stuff (danced, sung, popped out of cans etc).

We went to the town nearby after that (sorry, can't remember which it was at this particular moment, I'm not good with names), and had a bit of a wander round. Quite fun. Got lunch from Tesco (we know how to live it up, don't we!), and yeh, that was about it for Friday.

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