The Sounds of MIM

For the last couple of weeks I’ve posted multiple videos of my 365 #AnInstrumentADay challenge that I took when I visited MIM, the Musical Instrument Museum, in Phoenix Arizona.

MIM Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona

I found out about MIM when I decided to embark on this an instrument a day quest back in late 2014 and couldn’t believe such a wonderful musical place existed; but then I visited MIM and I was even MORE in awe at everything this World Class museum offered!

I flew in for the day, rented my car and quickly drove to the outskirts of Phoenix to get a full day in at MIM. Once there, I decided to try lunch first and let me tell you, do NOT miss a visit to MIM’s Cafe Allegro!  The Cafe is just what you would expect from a World-Class Museum with amazing, local ingredients, vegan and vegetarian or kid-friendly options, a fine choice of local and craft beverages as well as the freshly made dishes right in front of you. If you need to pick up and go, they also have a lovely espresso bar with baked goods or Cafe Allegro also has a number of delicious edible-souveniers like their hand-made sweet potato chips that are perfectly packaged for your airport trip!  Just look at these fabulous lunch options I enjoyed….

After a wonderful lunch I was ready to take on MIM’s Experience Gallery, a room FULL of many wonderful and rare musical instruments that you can play and interact with such as the large Asian Gamelan set or the absolutely unique (and my favorite new instrument) the Theremin!  These instruments are the majority of the #AnInstrumentADay videos that I have posted and that the compilation video above shows.

In between the instrument “experience” I decided to take a break and tour the museum and all that MIM showcases from around the world. When you tour the galleries you pick up a headset that allows you to listen to the instruments as you come near the displays, and the corresponding video displays will help educate you with information on the instruments. It is simply one of the best interactive displays I’ve ever seen!  So when I started to tour the galleries, listening to all the different instruments and learning about them, I realized just how small my 365 day challenge actually was in the scope of the world’s gathering of instruments. MIM has over 5000 instruments on display or for play within its walls… FIVE THOUSAND! Now I’m not going to say that it’s easy to compile 365 musical instruments to play everyday for a year, if it was that easy somebody else would have already taken on this challenge and as far as I can tell I’m the first; but when you tour this magnificent museum you will start to fully realize the depth and size music has had on humanity since the first sounds were heard by our ancestors and it’s AWESOME!

I could go on and on about MIM and the reasons you should make it a point to visit this amazing place, but I’ll leave it as simple as this…. if you have ever loved a song, a sound, a tone, an instrument (or a music label brand, Ahem… Sub Pop) then you owe it to yourself to visit MIM at least once in your lifetime….never will a vacation spot sound sweeter!

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