If you don’t spend your days watching Twitter, looking for good tweets to show your pals, you’ve likely never heard of the musical genius that is Izzy Humair. The purple-haired 17-year-old, who hails from Hong Kong but is spending the summer in New York, recently got Twitter famous — as famous as one can become in a week on the internet — for covering popular songs on kazoo. Actually, make that kazoos … plural. Humair’s shtick is connecting multiple kazoos, like a kazoo human-centipede, and then playing sweet tunes. It’s weird! It’s funny! It’s “Mr. Sandman” blown through 13 kazoos and “Fireflies” by Owl City blown through another 20! Select All caught up with Humair to discuss her burgeoning musical style and what’s next for her as an artist.
How did you come to own so many kazoos?
I just wanted one, but the party pack seemed like fun! I noticed that in the packaging, they stack up on each other, so I wanted to see how many could be stacked, and if it would change the sound. It was just something I saw in Party City and thought would be funny.
So you were just strolling through a store and inspiration struck? That’s great.
When you stacked them and recorded your first cover, was posting it on Twitter already on your mind?
I usually post my high jinks on Twitter, but I didn’t expect this one to blow up.
Tell me about the first song you chose to cover.
I chose “Mr. Sandman” because it’s an uplifting and fun song that would sound funny on a kazoo. After its success, I thought “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” would be a perfectly dramatic song to cover, and it was a lot more fun, especially because of the added kazoos.
I loved the Spring Awakening cover. That made me laugh so hard.
THANK YOU! I love that one the most tbh, Spring Awakening is my entire life.
Is it difficult to play that many kazoos at once?
It’s quite fun, but they fall apart easily. I enjoy changing the color patterns and the angles in which I film for variation and aesthetic creativity.
Are you a regular kazoo player or was this a first-time thing?
I made the video like a few minutes after buying them, so it was new! It just worked and it was funny, so I went with it.
What are you going to perform next?
Knowing the internet, this meme is already dead. But I don’t care about the attention, I’m just sharing my antics with my friends. I’m probably going to do “Africa” by Toto!
A classic for sure. Any tips for budding kazoo stars who might be reading this interview?
Make sure to really hum and warm up before. The kazoo won’t sound well unless you give it your all!!!!!
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.