Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

Hit Stix - Electronic "Air Drums"

Do I even have to tell you that Hit Stix are from the 1980's?  Just look at the photos from the crazy box!  Multiple watches!  Spiky hair!  There's a future anthropological lecture just in the box art.  Okay, I'll stop gushing over the box and move to explaining these things.

Hitstix_03Hit Stix are a pair of rubber tipped drum sticks that are cabled to a battery powered amp.  Clip the amp to your belt and simply shake the sticks in the air to get a white noise snare-ish sound.  You don't actually have to pound the sticks against anything, but where's the fun in that?

Hit Stix are another interesting entry into the world of kid-oriented musical instruments that use electronic toy technology to keep the project on the cheap.  Even a non drummer will notice that they trigger a little too easily, so it might be a challenge to do any actual music with them (though that won't stop me from trying!) 

Hitstix_02Before running to Ebay, you may want to consider holding out for Hit Stix 2 which had three built in sounds and some limited tone control.  There's no drum machine or built in rythym, so be prepared to  pound the beats out right there in the ether.

In the future I need to also cover one of my favorite percussion instruments - "Body Rap".  I'll save any more discussion for when I actually dig it out of storage, but let me just say that I was idiot enough to wear it to high school all the time, reliably making a jackass of myself during Mr. Fox's Advanced Bio class.  Look, we weren't learning anything in there anyway...



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