The musical instrument art of
Robert Armstrong
© Frank Ford, 3/14/99; Photos by FF, 3/14/99

You may know my friend Robert Armstrong as the creator of Mickey Rat, the inventor of the Couch Potato (he really is) or, perhaps, as a founding member of the Cheap Suit Serenaders.

He's also a designer and painter of some very cool instruments:

Let's see some close-ups.

If you're into Gypsy jazz, this one will need no introduction.

All around the rim are scenes from Django Reinhardt’s life:

Lurking at the far right is a great sendup of the famous Kamaka pineapple uke!

The Tiny Tim commemorative:

Pretty cool, eh? Tiny on the half shell, surrounded by cherubic representations of his musical influences: Cliff Edwards, Rudy Vallee, Al Jolson and Nick Lucas (clockwise from upper left.)

Well, even though I'm known as something of a curmudgeon when it comes to electric guitars, I have to say this one really touched me:

It's the result of Bob's collaboration with fanned fret guru and guitar maker, Ralph Novak.

AND, it comes with a stylin' matched amplifier, of course:

Here are two more ukes:

Yes, Bob is available for custom design work and commissions. If you're interested in getting in touch with him, just
e-mail him.

The Yowl-A-Lele - It's a winner!

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