The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s newest exhibit, which is on display until October 1, 2019, “Play It Loud, Instruments of Rock & Roll” is a thrill! You get up close and personal with instruments that were–ahem–instrumental in making some of the greatest music of our time. The history! The hysteria! (That refers to me screaming-until-I-was-hoarse at countless concerts.) I be-bopped my way through the exhibit (embarrassing Hubby, of course), and marveled that I was in the presence of the cumulative creativity, talent, hard work, and genius of some of the greatest musicians in the world. The only drawback to the exhibit? I wish it ended with a concert!
Five and a half years in the making,“Play It Loud” aims to provoke reverent gasps from anyone who cares about rock history, and it succeeds around every bend. It’s impossible to wander around the exhibit, which runs through October 1st before heading to the Hall of Fame in Cleveland, without encountering an instrument responsible for one or another of monumental piece of recorded history. Encountering those instruments, many behind glass, can be a humbling experience, and the wear and tear on some of them is also testament to how visceral rock was. David Browne for RollingStone
Rolling Stones’ Brian Jones used this Appalachian Dulcimer on “Lady Jane” and “I am Waiting” from the 1966 album Aftermath. Lovin’ Spoonful’s John Sebastian used this autoharp in hits such as “Do You Believe in Magic” and “You Didn’t Have to Be So Nice.” R.E.M.’s Peter Buck used this mandolin to write and record the hook in “Losing My Religion” (1991) and plays it in the music video for the song.
Related Post: Play It Loud, Instruments of Rock & Roll, Part 2