A modified handsaw played like a violin and a squeezebox. The steel saw blade is bent by hand and a rosined string on a bow moved along the toothless side of the saw, or the blade hammered, to produce a sound just about only comparable to the theremin. The tip to making good music on a saw involves this saying: "In order to make a sound with the saw, there is a secret, with the shape of a S... "

Musical saws have been around since the 12th century, and several classical tunes composed with it in mind. In the early 20th century they were further developed by folk singers.

American folk songs, particularly those of labor movements like the International Workers of the World (IWW) often incorporate the usage of a musical saw.

Saw players from around the world meet at a festival in Santa Cruz, California at Roaring Camp in the middle of each July. Otherwise, the best way to see a musical saw performed is by renting the Jeunet and Caro film, Delicatessen, the only film featuring saw-playing.

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