For generations, the unique sounds emanating from the music box have filled the rooms with warmth and calmed babies. Long before there were radios, CDs, tapes or even records, the music box was the source of music for most people. Unlike pianos or other traditional musical instruments, the music box was automatic and did not require any opportunity to play. All we had to do was reassemble it and enjoy the sounds produced. Centuries later, we have many more ways to enjoy the sounds of music, but the music box still maintains its popularity so far.
The Musically Followers gained popularity for the first time in the 19th century. Today, in the 21st century, the basic form and function do not change from the first versions. Most music boxes produce sound by striking the teeth of a metal comb with pins resting on a rotating cylinder. The teeth of the comb of the music box vibrate after being struck and produce a specific sound, like the strings of a piano. The cylinder of the music box is often rolled by hand to power a spring motor. In other versions, the music box may require the user to manipulate a handle attached to the cylinder to operate it, while modern variants may even operate on batteries. But no matter how they work, the sound has remained the same over the centuries.
The music box is still popular and widely used today. While some play classic songs and lullabies like boxes from the past, others play more recent and popular songs. Traditional forms of money still exist, but many now take other forms. Figures of different shapes and sizes are often the face of today's music box. Each music box can be customized and many suppliers offer thousands of songs and styles to choose from. But the continued popularity of the music box has not diminished the demand for older styles. Old and collectible music boxes are still fueling a thriving market where it is not uncommon to find models that are still selling for thousands of dollars.
The delicate and incomparable sound of the music box is something we all recognize. It is likely that we introduced this sound during our first days of life. This may explain its enduring appeal. The music box is an audible connection to our past as individuals, but also as people, playing immutable melodies that have been with us for centuries and will remain with us for centuries to come.