First bit of sketching out of the design done. Currently leaning towards a laser-cut frame borrowing some of the shape of a trumpet. I like the trumpet as a base for the shape and layout of this instrument because the buttons for the chord keyboard sensibly replace the valves, and the microphone / audio jack logically go where the mouthpiece would normally be. When playing it, the musician can comfortable sing / beatbox / etc. into the mouthpiece, or hold it out to collect some ambient noise while retaining on-going control of the sound.
Making the body of the instrument laser-cut also helps make the project reproducible. And it makes me happy because I'm currently obsessed with exploring the possibilities of the laser cutter a literal 15 second sprint away from me.