Laurie Hansen, a 62-year-old inventor with osteoarthritis, developed Rock-iT Barre, a device allowing players to play 108+ chords without bending their fingers. A rocking motion allows players to switch from major to minor chords with ease.
The Rock-iT Barre is adjustable, allowing it to be used on various sizes of guitars and ukuleles. It can also be used left-handed and can be rotated to compensate for the various widths of instrument necks. “Pinkie” devices are available as well, offering more chord options by adding notes such as a minor or major 6th or 7th.
This simpler playing method encourages individuals that are either musically intimidated or suffering from arthritic pain to pick up a guitar or ukulele and start playing. Once confident using this method, it is Hansen’s hope that these players will then move on to playing guitar in a traditional manner and further embrace the joy of music making.