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Temple City Kazoo Orchestra

TCKO Some Songs
Temple City Kazoo Orchestra
"Some Kazoos"
Twelve-inch 45 r.p.m. vinyl record
Rhino Records, 1978

Some selections of this album are now available on "Tales from the Rhino," which I purchased from Amazon.com

This album saved my musical reputation. All my life I'd been told that the kazoo was not a musical instrument. It started in high school, when I assembled a group of my classmates to play their choral parts to the school song on kazoos. Sister Virginia was not amused. Then, in college, I performed a duet of Bach's Two Part Invention in C in the lobby of the music school with a fellow music major. The dean stormed out of his office yelling, "Stop that garbage! Stop that right now!"

After I graduated from the University of Maryland, but before I launched my incredibly successful career as a librarian, The Temple City Kazoo Orchestra released the album, "Some Kazoos," on the Rhino Record label. Issued on sickly green vinyl, this 12-inch 45 r.p.m. featured only four songs. I cannot describe the feeling of relief knowing that I was not the only musician in the world rendering classical music on the kazoo. TCKO's performance of Richard Strauss' Also Sprach Zarathustra, juxtaposed with Led Zepellin's "Whole Lotta Love" and two disco numbers that I will not name, spoke of genius bordering on insanity.

By the time the album came out, I was already involved in therapy to discover why I had chosen to play an instrument so reviled as the kazoo. Despite the revelations of the Temple City Kazoo Orchestra, I eventually gave up the kazoo to play something more socially acceptable -- the banjo.

Copyright © 2000-2010, Julie Mangin. All Rights Reserved. April 2, 2016