Wazza invents the Wazinator - music and dancing ensues

Doug Eaton

YOU MAY never have heard of the Wazinator, but if you have ever listened to Jack Johnson or Keith Urban, chances are you have heard what the Wazinator can do.

The Wazinator is an acoustic stompbox designed and manufactured by Warwick Porter in a small shed at Billinudgel and has a following with musicians internationally.

Distributed to Germany, France, Korea, New Zealand, Japan and soon the USA, the small portable percussion instrument is played by stomping a timber pad with the foot, the sound of which reverberates through a transducers microphone, which is then amplified.

"The Wazinator makes a kick drum sound and the beat is used to accompany a guitarist," Mr Porter said.

There are two Wazinators to choose from - the ClassicKSB319 handcrafted from radiata pine, and the mini-kicker - a small, lighter weight version without the timber pad.

Mr Porter, a guitarist who has also studied science, started experimenting with a design when he was working at the Byron Music shop in 2007 and saw there was a gap in the market for acoustic stomp boxes.

"I've always tinkered around with musical instruments and at the time the range of stompboxes available was very limited," he said.

"My stomp box uses a pump action design which translates into a more musical tone; it's more like a real drum sound than other stomp boxes and the timber tone complements the guitar," he said.

Coming up with a name for the instrument was easy, Mr Porter said.

"Being called Warwick and living in Australia, my name is often abbreviated to Waz," he said.

"One friend in particular would call me The Wazinator whenever I rang and the name stuck."

The first Wazinator sold in 2010 and since then Mr Porter sells the stomp box online; in 40 outlets in Australia as well as internationally.

Warwick Porter of Ocean shores, Maker of the Wazinator classic KSB319.Photo Doug Eaton / The Northern Star
Warwick Porter of Ocean shores, Maker of the Wazinator classic KSB319.Photo Doug Eaton / The Northern Star Doug Eaton

Topics:  business editors picks invention jack johnson manufacturing music

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