Can a Banjo Made From a Cheese Can Make Beautiful Music?


Cougar Gold cheese cans are being recycled into cheesy music. - WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY
  • Washington State University
  • Cougar Gold cheese cans are being recycled into cheesy music.

For more than 60 years, Washington State University has been selling Cougar Gold Cheese in 30-ounce tin cans. Great idea, but what to do with the can when the cheese is gone?

Make banjos, of course.

John Elwood, who lives in a ghost town called Elberton, uses the cheese cans to make banjos, and it sounds pretty good.

A deep cookie tin makes a deeper tone.

While the canjo has a folky, bluegrass feel, the roasting pan guitar has more of a dirty blues vibe.

A tuna can walks the line between rock and twang.

A tiny round Altoids tin makes a wee little slide guitar for expressing minor heartbreaks. Like being out of tangerine Altoids.

Tired of waiting for the water company to pick up your empty jug? Make a bass and play some Sabbath. That'll scare the crap out of him when he finally shows up.


Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.