Dr. Who and the Musical Saw

The television show Dr. Who has been around in various forms since the 1960’s. It’s about a character named Dr. Who, who travels the universe in his TARDIS, saving people from bad guys and making friends across time. The theme music was written by Ron Grainer and Delia Derbyshire in 1963, and it sounds remarkable in this arrangement that includes the tubulum, the saw, percussion, and a digital orchestra.

The musical fellow in this video makes music out of all sorts of things, including PVC pipe and a saw. You can see he has made a tubulum (a sort of percussion instrument made out of PVC pipes) that has a total of 16 pitches! He has a blog about how to make a tubulum if you are so inclined. You can also see him play the saw in this video. He uses a tennis ball to help him hold the end of the saw and get the “S” shape needed to make the saw sing. The sound of the saw is perfect for science fiction and outer space sorts of noises. I think the Doctor would be pleased.



Rowena Southard, your blog hostess, is a musical saw enthusiast who lives in California. She loves all kinds of music and has a special fondness for unusual instruments.