|A medley of some of our instruments|
We have a variety of guitars, ukuleles, and hand-drums (djembe, doumbek, bohdran, bongo, Jamaican steel drum, dobani, and kalimba) to start our musical collection. There are 29 instruments and six amplifiers: six ukeleles, six acoustic guitars, two electric guitars, two electric basses, 11 drums, two kalimbas (thumb pianos); and two bass and two guitar amplifiers, and two “headphone amplifiers.” Several of the instruments are appropriate for or designed specifically for children. We will also have some musical accessories for lending: capos, slides, variety packs of guitar picks. The instruments were selected for ease of use, ability to maintain, “fun,” cost, durability, and fit with library content on how to play musical instruments. Each instrument was hand selected for playability, quality, and cost effectiveness. You can check out pictures of the instruments on our Flickr site.
Library staff will host a music discussion group at the Twinbrook Library on the first Monday of every month at 6:30 PM, where we’ll do a little demonstration, a little open mic, and some problem/issue sharing with the group. The first music discussion group kicks off on October 1st. We also plan to offer periodic special musical programs sponsored by the Friends of the Library, Twinbrook Chapter.
Customers can find information about the instruments available and the program policies at the Library of Things: Music page. Please note that you will not see instruments in the library catalog, nor can you put a reserve/hold on an instrument. You can call the branch to inquire about an instrument, 240-777-0240, and staff will hold an available instrument for the balance of the business day at your request. The instrument must be picked up that same day.
Why do an instrument library? MCPL has a rich collection of music, the music business, musical instruments, and how to play music in digital format, media, and books. Playing a musical instrument can be rewarding, relaxing, educational. We wanted to provide that opportunity to our customers, as several other library systems in the country have also started to do. MCPL is also richly blessed with tremendous cultural diversity, and we have made our selection of instruments as culturally broad as we can to provide that learning opportunity as well.
We will be soliciting feedback using small surveys throughout the first year of the program, to assess whether to continue the program, consider expanding it to other branches, expand instrument choices, and other considerations. You can also discuss any concerns or issues directly with the Twinbrook Library Staff, or via the “Tell Us What You Think” comments and suggestions form.
We hope to see you on September 22nd, or whenever you can get in to check out an instrument.