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1. What is a lagerphone ?
2. Origins and history.
3. Design and construction.
4. Examples.
5. Rattlers.
6. Terminology.
7. The Stomper Sticks
8. International
9. World record
Email terminals Send me an email .....


Launch note

When I first compiled these lagerphone pages, more years ago than I now care to count, I found myself stepping into something of a void. I had a vague idea what a lagerphone was but no clear idea - so I went into the World Wide Web - which, to be fair, was then just starting up - and found nothing. Or at least nothing useful. One or two indirect references but nothing to guide me as to what to do. That put me onto my own devices. I did some experimenting with ideas that principally used bottle tops and could provide percussion for a bush band. I hesitate now to describe the results but with experimentation I produced something that seemed reasonable - or at least worked.

Having got that I then decided to try to fill that void with my own web page (page then, not pages) rather expecting to be decried as a pom who could not know anything about such a native Australian instrument. That criticism never came. Instead I started to receive various favourable comments, reports on what others had done, and suggestions for expansion. So I expanded into two pages and then, as more years passed and more emails came my way, into the several herewith.

Gradually I came to realise that I had become the repository - I would not say expert, no one could be that for such a diverse instrument - for information on lagerphones. In the years since then many more lagerphone pages have appeared on the Web. I defer to at least some of them for their content and regard my own as only a partial offering. If you have lit on it via a search engine I do advise you to take it with caution. It cannot be considered either authoritative or comprehensive. Indeed it is probably no more than a small offering from a large and richly varied subject. If you have come to it from a music link I would much appreciate a message stating your point of view. And particularly so if you could direct me to any sources I may have missed, or supply any material - words or pictures - about lagerphones.

Something I record with a small whoop of delight - at the  National Folk Festival   in 2013 we had a lagerphone workshop and then set a world record for the number of lagerphones all playing the same thing in the same place at the same time. For three days we had hammered, painted and assembled. Then on the Sunday evening a long parade from the arena to the Central Park where we all bounced and scraped and sang Waltzing Matilda (what else ?!) to the playing of the Paverty band

Following that success I received several enquiries about doing it again. Such a repeat depended on the policy makers on the NFF board and as there are no democratic roots thereunder putting ideas forward is not easy. In ten years since there has been no repeat. However if anyone - or everyone - who would like to have one were to put the suggestion either direct to the NFF or via state and territory folk federations it might be hearkened to. If we asked for a contribution towards the cost of materials it could pay for itself..

If you should be in, near, or passing through, Canberra, I would be most pleased to meet with you and discuss lagerphonic ideas. Send me an email - - and we will see what we can do.

Later note - I am now 85 and though in good fettle for my age it is only realistic to realise that I could be approaching my finish line. When I die these lagerphone pages will die with me. That is not such a serious loss, there are now several others up on the web. Some are better than mine at least in presentation, but I think none are as comprehensive. If anyone reading these notes should think mine are worth saving, or combining into a more fulsome set, I would be pleased to discuss possibilities.
Keith Sayers - Canberra - May 2023