Your Music Box Arrangement Will Not Sound Like a Recording of Your Music
Music Boxes excel at specific kinds of harmonic structures and embellishments,
and your music will be arranged to take advantage of those.
A Music Box movement also presents mechanical limitations that will impact
your music. A great music box arrangement will bring your melody
to mind in the context of all the glistening elements that
make music box movements so unique and beautiful. If you are familiar
with antique music boxes, you know what we mean!
How to Get Started
Once you understand most of the information on this page, the next step
is to call us at . Please do not
e-mail about a custom arrangement us unless you have called us first.
A phone call allows more personal interaction in regard to this very
Introduction to Custom Arrangements
Is there a melody that is special
to you, to that certain someone, to a special group, for a special
occasion, or for a market you would like to sell to? Would you like
to preserve that melody? Perhaps we can help you do just that with
a custom music box tune arrangement.
Perhaps an even more personal gift would be music
newly composed in that special person or group's favorite musical
style. Composing music especially for a music box usually results in
even better musical quality by giving the composer greater freedom
to showcase all the potential of a music box. And honestly, though
it won't be a tune they already know and like, after first impressions
have passed, prior familiarity looses importance while love grows -
for exceptional harmonies, chord progressions, and ornaments. As an
added bonus, new music box compositions also eliminate copyright licensing
headaches and costs.
Historically, custom tunes for music boxes
of this quality
have run into tens of thousands of dollars - for obvious reasons.
My love for music and our technology add up to top-notch quality at prices
that were absolutely unheard of in the past.
Have you ever been to an old-fashioned music box shop or museum? I went
to my first music box museum in 1960 at Knott's Berry Farm. About
three years later, I discovered a shop there that actually sold music boxes.
At that time, I did not know anyone was still making any movements
larger than 18 notes. But, there it was, I saw it: a three-tune, 50-Note
music box! I loved it. However, due to my age and finances I was not able
to get it. It was sold before I could save up enough money. Who would have
thought that I would not only build a collection of other such music
boxes, but I would also become a custom composer and arranger for
I want everyone who gets a custom arrangement from me to
experience some of that golden era of long ago. Be assured my arranging
styles do indeed embrace those of the antique music boxes. I remember
the days when I would go to a music box shop - after they called me
to come and see their newest music box. Once I heard the magnificent
instrument, I remember saving as much money as I could to pay for the
music box. What days those were!
The store owner and I had quite a celebration!
Once you understand most of the information on this page, the
next step will be to call us at . Please
do not e-mail about a custom arrangement us unless you have called us
first. A phone call allows more personal interaction in regard to this
very personal project.
We'll give you more thorough information about our process, review
your tune or musical preferences, then ask for a retainer. If we are arranging
a copyrighted tune, we'll also need to obtain royalty licensing.
will expertly compose or arrange your tune, and supply you with a recording
for your approval. After receiving the rest of your payment, we send your
completed arrangement to the factory. They program a computer to accurately
place one pin in the cylinder for each and every note of your arrangement,
and program another computer to pre-grind each tooth of your comb for
the notes in your arrangement. They then hand-tune each tooth to the correct
pitch. We take it one step farther with our
In-House Bell-Like Tuning. There is certainly
nothing generic about this!
Please note that we will not arrange music that we consider offensive,
which would include sexual, abusive, anti-God content, acid rock, gangsta rap, etc.
The above are approximations and general guidelines and are subject
to change. There is a lot to a custom music box tune, but it is
well worth the price and the wait.
If you wish we can also put your Custom Music Box Movement in a
Music Box for you.
Examples of Custom Arrangements
For examples of our custom arrangements, German
Folk Tunes, The
Musical Snuff Box, Texas
Tunes, and The
Great Bath. We've also done Disney's
Bambi, custom tunes for Shevach
Art, Chris Hüelsbeck and others (we will also be glad to play these arrangements over a LANDLINE phone).
The Following is a Excerpt from Mike's
I sent my wedding song "This Day In September" to Rick and asked him to
do what I thought would be impossible. Take a standard song, re-score
it to sound like a classic music box should sound and still keep the original
feeling and emotion of the song intact. Rick listened to the song and
suggested I choose a 72 note Sankyo movement. I listened to some of the
samples Better Music Boxes has online and was taken by the exquisite quality
of the 50, 72 and 100 note movements. I trusted his judgment and decided
to go with the 72 note.
Within a week, my phone rang. I answered and all I heard was Rick saying, "Are you sitting down?" I answered "Yes" and he proceeded to play me the score over the phone. When it finished, I heard Rick say, "Well, what do you think".
I sat quiet for about 30 seconds. I was trying to compose myself as I
was overtaken my emotions. I'm not an overly emotional guy, so this was
quite surprising to me. Rick on the other hand was very emotional and so
excited to have me listen to this arrangement for the first time. This emotion
is why I wanted Rick and Better Music Boxes to take on this challenge. What
I heard on the other end of the phone that day was purely magical. I
had no idea what to expect, but obviously what Rick had delivered was beyond
any expectations. I told him it was perfect and to not change a thing.