One Man Band

one-man band is a musician who plays a number of musical instruments simultaneously using their hands, feet, limbs, and various mechanical contraptions. The simplest type of “one-man band” — a singer accompanying themselves on acoustic guitar and harmonica mounted in a metal “harp rack” below the mouth — is often used by buskers. More complicated setups may include wind instruments strapped around the neck, a large bass drum mounted on the musician’s back with a beater which is connected to a foot pedal, cymbals strapped between the knees or triggered by a pedal mechanism, tambourines and maracas tied to the limbs, and a stringed instrument strapped over the shoulders (e.g., a banjoukulele or guitar). Since the development of Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) in the 1980s, musicians have also incorporated chest-mounted MIDI drum pads, foot-mounted electronic drum triggers, and electronicpedal keyboards into their set-ups.
The simple guitar and harmonica combination (as used by such musicians as Tex WilliamsAnton NewcombeJimmy ReedBob DylanNeil Young, and Ray Dorset of Mungo Jerry) is so common now that it is rarely considered to be a one-man band. British-born Don Partridge made the classic one man band outfit (bass drum on the back, guitar and harmonica) famous in the streets of Europe, and was probably the first ever busker to enter the Top Ten of the UK Singles Chart, with his hit singles “Rosie” and “Blue Eyes” in 1968. Modern one-man bands include such performers as Ben de la Garza Hasil Adkins and Sterling Magee, better known as “Mister Satan,” from Satan and Adam.

The term “one-man band” is also colloquially used to describe a performer who plays every instrument on a recorded song one at a time, and then mixes them together in a multitrack studio. While this approach to recording is more common in electronica genres such as techno and acid house than traditional rock music, some rock performers such as Stevie Wonder, Prince, Lenny Kravitz, Paul McCartney, Emitt Rhodes, Todd Rundgren, Roy Wood and Les Fradkin have made records in which they play every instrument. Other examples of a one-man band in the recording studio are Dave Grohl for the first studio album by the Foo Fighters, Trent Reznor for Nine Inch Nails, Varg Vikernes for Burzum andBilly Corgan for Smashing Pumpkins since 2009. Nash the Slash not only plays all instruments on his recordings, but has been giving solo concerts since 1975, using synchronized drum machines and synthesizers as he plays either an electric violin or electric mandolin.

One-man bands in this context have recently become more  commonplace in extreme metal, especially black metal, where a number of bands apart from Burzum consist of only one member.Such artists include Nargaroth, Falkenbach, Arckanum, Nortt,  Horde,  Zenithrash, and others. While most of these bands do not play live, some such as Nargarothhire additional musicians for live performances.
“One-woman band” is not used very often in the vernacular, but in the last century as gender inequality has been addressed in the free world, women have increasingly had a presence as musicians in most forms of music. An example of a one-woman band is Merrill Garbus, who performs as tUnE-YaRdS and plays every instrument on all recordings.