Acme Siren

Acme SirenFounded in Birmingham, UK, J. Hudson & Co. have been making Acme Whistles since 1870. And 150 years later, they are still the world's largest and most famous producers of whistles.

A percussion instrument that creates the stylized sound of a police siren. The Acme siren is comprised of a cylinder shaped body with a fan-like blade mounted inside. As the performer blows into the cylinder, the blades are set into motion creating a high-pitched whistle effect that raises or lowers in pitch determined by the speed of the blades. The faster the blades turn, the higher the pitch. The slower the blades turn, the lower the pitch. This is a small version of early police and fire sirens that were mounted on vehicles and cranked by hand to rotate the blades. This is a sound effect that is normally used for humorous effects in compositions and to add extra comic effect for sight gags on stage and in cartoons.

Beginning life as the ‘Cyclists Road Clearer’ in the 1880s, this amazing sound effect is now part of every percussionist’s kitbag. A real whoosh of sound, the only whistle that sings on, even when the blowing has stopped!