If you've ever been down to Louisiana or been to Mardi Gras, you've definitely been witness to some really great Cajun and Zydeco music. I'm sure you also saw quite a few musicians playing a strange ridged metal instrument hung over their shoulders. It's called a Frottoir or a Rubboard. What started off as regular old washboard was reinvented and crafted by Mr. Willie Landry for the "King Of Zydeco" musician Cleveland Chenier. It's played by rubbing several bottle openers along its metal ridges and it creates this really cool, distinctive and echoey kind of sound. These famous Rubboards are now made by Tee Don Landry, Willie's son, at Key of Z Rubboards. So check them out if you want to buy, learn to play or read about the history of these uniquely American musical instruments.
The next best thing to an Authentic Zydeco Rubboard would be one of these cool Metal Zydeco Washboard Ties. We've all seen neckties that look like piano keys or have musical notes as a patterned design, but none can actually be played like a musical instrument. So when you're bored at work or stuck in commuter traffic, simply grab your washboard tie and slip it on, slide the included thimbles over your fingertips and strum away on the ridged 24 gauge brushed stainless steel and add a little rhythm to your day.
Check out the instructional videos below to learn to play the Zydeco Rubboard. Cool huh?