Category Archives: Flutes

Flutes

Pipe & Tabor

Name: Pipe & Tabor.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No: 421.221.12
Country: Spain, Many.
Region: Western Europe & European continent.

Description: The Pipe and tabor is a pair of instruments played by a single player, consisting of a three-hole pipe played with one hand, and a small drum played with the other. The tabor [drum] hangs on the performer’s left arm or around the neck, leaving the hands free to beat the drum with a stick in the right hand and play the pipe with thumb and first two fingers of the left hand.

History: Mersenne mentions a virtuoso, John Price, who could rise to the twenty-second on the galoubet. Praetorius mentions and illustrates three sizes of the Stamentienpfeiff, the treble [50.8 cm / 20 inches in length], the tenor [66.04 cm / 26 inches in length] and the bass [76.2 cm / 30 inches] the last being played by means of a crook about [58.42 cm / 23 inches in length].

A specimen of the bass in the museum of the Brussels Conservatory has middle C for its lowest note. Three-hole pipes made from bone and dating to the early Middle Ages have been found in England. There are images of medieval tabor players in buildings, for example York Minster, Lincoln and Gloucester cathedrals, and Tewkesbury Abbey.

Citations: Bibliography: William Shakespeare 1598 Much Ado About Nothing. p. Act II, Scene 3 ; Praetorius, Organographia, being the second volume of his Syntagma Musici, 1618, where a figure is given in Plate IX. See Breitkopf and Hartel’s reprint of Praetorius, also Galpin’s Old English Instruments of Music, 1910 ; An Address to a Society of Morris Dancers, Oxford, February 12, 1914 by Sir Francis Darwin [Son of Sir Charles Darwin] site by Chris Brady; Anthony C. Baines, Hélène La Rue Websites: Grove Music Online / Pipe & Tabor 

 

Pincullo

Name: Pincullo.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Specimens: 1 in collection.
Country: Many.
Region: South Americas.

Description: The pincullo or pinkillu [in Quecha] is a short length flute having a closed fipple at the top of the instrument. This flute is played in Bolivia and Peru. Pincullo are played solo, or in ensemble often accompanied by percussion or stringed instruments or both depending on the region the pincullo is played. Usually having 6 to 7 finger holes.  

Citations: Bibliography: Websites: Websites / MIMO International ~ Musical Instrument Museums Online [Pincullo article] ; Metmuseum.org [Bolivian Pincullo] ; Waka Pincullo by J. Richard Haefer ~ Grove Music Online ;

Low Whistle

Name: Low Whistle.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.221.12
Country: Ireland, Many.
Region: Many, Ireland, Great Britain.

Description: The low whistle or concert whistle, is a variation of the traditional tin whistle / penny-whistle. It is distinguished from the tin-flute by its over all length and lower pitch. It is most closely associated with the performances of British and Irish artists such as Finbar Furey and his son Martin Furey, Old Blind Dogs, Michael McGoldrick, River-dance, Lunasa and Davy Spillane. The low-whistle is increasingly accepted as a featured musical-instrument in Celtic music.

History: The development of the low-whistle carried on through the its earlier traverse flute descendants since the 16th century. Modeled after the the earlier 16th century transverse flutes in terms of finger-holes, the inner diameter of the conical bore and over all shape of the instrument.

Hence, the expression “Irish low whistle” is not denoting an Irish origin, but just an intensive use of this instrument in Ireland and, because of cultural similarity, in the whole British archipelago. While before long several notable instrument maker were producing low whistles, it is usually the River-dance tour of the 1990s that is credited with giving the low whistle commercial exposure and recognition outside traditional music circles.

Development: English flute maker and jazz musician Bernard Overton is credited with producing the first modern low whistle in late 1971, which he made with Finbar Furey after Furey’s prized Indian bamboo whistle was destroyed while on tour. Unable to repair it, Overton attempted to produce a metal replica and Finbar and himself spent many hours in the shed at the back of Bernard’s house in Rugby, designing, testing and ultimately perfecting the flute.

Usage: It is often used for the playing of airs and slow melodies due to its haunting and delicate sound. However, it is also becoming used more often for the playing of Irish and British jigs, reels and hornpipes, it being easier to produce some ornamentation on the whistle, due to the size of the finger holes. Although the tone varies subtlety from maker to maker. It is generally characterized by a more breathy flute-like tone then traditional tin-whistles.

Varieties: The most common low whistle is the “Low D”, pitched one octave below the traditional D whistle. A whistle is generally classed as a low whistle if its lowest note is the G above middle C or lower. Whistles higher than this are termed “soprano” or “high” whistles when a distinction is necessary. Low whistles operate on the same principles

Playing Techniques: Generally fingered in the same way as traditional penny-whistles although for many, a “piper’s grip” may be required due to the distance between the holes. They belong to the same woodwind instrument family of end-blown fipple flutes.

Citations: Bibliography: “about the instruments”. Retrieved September 18, 2014. “Whistling Low: History”. Whistling Low. 2001 ; Hannigan, Steáfán & Ledsam, David 2006 ; The Low Whistle Book. SVM Publications. p. 96. Notes: Including, among others, Brian Howard, Phil Hardy, Colin Goldie, Dave Shaw [who pursued a rolled conical design] and Jon Swayne [a tune-able wooden design]  ;

Kuisi

Name: Kuisi.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12 
Country: Colombia & Panama.
Regions: Central & South America.

Description: A kuisi or kuizi is a duct flute that is made from a cactus stem, with a beeswax and charcoal powder mixture for the head [where the air stream is blown into]. The kuisi is played in both Colombia and neighbouring Panama. In the lower slopes of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta; for example the Spanish speaking village of Atánquez. Similar flutes called carrizos, whose name originates from the name of the cane they are made from. The ensemble is thus named conjunto de carrizos.

The conjunto accompanies the dance chicote, a circle dance in which men and women alternate, placing their arms n each other’s shoulders. On the coastal plain, for example the town of San Jacinto, Bolivar. An ensemble known as the conjunto de gaitas commonly provides the music for the cambia, porro and other such genres as the vallenato. This ensemble consists of two duct flutes [ghaitas], a maraca and two hand-beaten drums of African descent.

Playing Techniques: Musicians often use wax to close the finger-holes and to alter the tone of the flute. By blocking one or the other tone hole on the kuisi sigi, and in the kuisi bunzi either the upper or lower finger-hole is covered. So that only the four finger-holes are used at any one time.

Varieties: There are male and female versions of the kuisi [or gaita in Spanish for pipe]. The female kuisi bunsi [also rendered kuisi abundjí in Spanish] is also commonly known as a gaita hembra in Spanish and has five holes; the male kuisi sigi [or kuisi azigí] is called a gaita macho in Spanish and has two holes.

Construction: Modern kuisi’s are between 70 cm and 80 cm in length, traditionally the measurement of the kuisi was defined by the arm of the maker. Kuisi’s built by the Kogi people are reported to be up to two feet or 60 cm in length. They are constructed from cane [carrizo] by the flautist him self.

The kuisi is always made by a male. The length being measured as three times the span between the extended thumb and little finger. Plus the span between the extended thumb and index finger. The finger holes are located with a distance between them. The finger holes are then located with a distance between them measured by the width of two fingers plus, half of the width of the thumb.

They are constructed from a cactus [Selenicereus grandifloras]  which is bored and whose thorns are cut. The centre is removed, first moistening and then boring with an iron stick. The cactus stem is thicker at one of its ends, this will go upside and coupled with the bee wax head which carries the feather mouth piece. Though the instrument is slightly conic on the outside, its perforation is cylindrical.

Citations: Bibliography: Joaquin Posada Gutierrez, Memorias Historico Politicas 1865 ; Bogota, Imprenta Nacional in 1929  ; Aquiles Escalante, El negro en Colombia, Monografias Sociológicas, no. 18 Bogota: Universidad Nacional de Colombia, 1964, pp. 149] on the fusion of Indigenous, African and European instruments and music cultures ; Websites

Koncovka

Name: Koncovka.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Country: Slovakia.
Region: Eastern Europe.

Descriptions: The Koncovka is a Slovak duct-blown overtone fipple flute without finger holes. Traditional koncovka melodies use the partial Lydian scale available on this instrument.

Playing Techniques: It is traditionally played by shepherds. The koncovka flute is played by closing and opening the bottom hole of the flute. By increasing the air speed, two different harmonic series of notes can be played with the end either open or closed.

Citations:

Klui

Name: Klui.
Type: Aerophones > Duct > Flutes.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Specimen: 1 in collection.
Country: Thailand.
Region: South-East Asia.

Description: The khlui [in Thai: ขลุ่ย] is a vertical duct flute from Thailand. Originated before or during the Sukhothai period [1238-1583AD] along with many other Thai instruments. The history of this flute was officially recorded as a Thai instrument by king Trailokkanat [1431-1488], who sets the official model of the instruments. It is a duct-flute. it survives to the present day as the khlui phiang aw.

Types: With a long history, the instrument had been modified to be used in other occasions, making new types of Khlui that was invented. There are 3 main types of Khlui, although there are also many others. The 3 types of Khlui, that is still popular to the present day. These versions of the khlui are the khlui phiang aw, khlui phiang lib or the khlui u.

Construction: Generally made of bamboo, though instruments are also made from hardwood or plastic. After many generations of modifications.

Citations:

Khloy

Name: Khloy.
Type: Aerophones > Flutes > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Country: Cambodia.
Region: South East Asia.

Description: A khloy [in Khmer: ខ្លុយ khloy] is a traditional bamboo flute from Cambodia and more specifically the Khmer people. The khloy and other similar bamboo flutes can be found throughout Asia, due to bamboo’s abundance in the region. The Cambodian khloy is often mistaken for its close relative of Thailand, the klui flute. Unlike the klui flute, the khloy is generally played solo in an informal setting. The khloy is mostly played using the pentatonic scale.

Construction: The khloy is a duct flute, about 38 cm or 15 inches in length and 2.5 cm or 1 inch in diameter, with 8 or 9 finger holes, and a duct end where the player blows into to produce a sound.

Citations:

Frula

Name: Frula.
Type: Aerophones > Duct > Flutes.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Country: Serbia.
Region: Balkans & South Eastern Europe.

Description: The frula pronounced [frǔla], Serbian Cyrillic: фрула, also known as svirala [свирала] or jedinka [in Croatian]. It is a musical instrument which resembles a medium sized flute, traditionally played in Serbia.

The frula is a traditional instrument of shepherds, who would play while tending their flocks. It is one of several aerophones used for leisure time, rituals, or accompanying the kolo [circle dance] along with long flutes [duduk, cevara], the double flute [dvojnice], and the bag-pipe [gajde].

Construction: It is typically made of wood, having a fipple or duct. The frula has six finger holes.

Citations: Bibliography: Rad kongresa. 1981. p. 334. Danica. Hrvatsko književno društvo sv. Ćirila i Metoda. 1951; Sviraljka s usnama »jedinka«. Dragoljub Zamurović; Ilja Slani; Madge Phillips-Tomašević 2002. Serbia: life and customs. ULUPUDS. p. 188; Christopher Deliso 2009. Culture and Customs of Serbia and Montenegro. Greenwood Press. p. 140. ISBN 978-0-313-34436-7 ;

Fujara

Name: Fujara.
Type: Aerophones > Flute > Duct > External.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Country: Slovakia.
Region: Continental & East Europe.

Description: The fujara [in Slovakian [ˈfujara]) originated in central Slovakia as a large sophisticated folk shepherd’s overtone fipple flute of unique design. It is technically a contrabass in the tabor pipe class.

Features: Ranging from 160 mm to 200 cm long and in 1.7 metres in length. The fujara is tuned in the available keys A / G or F. It has three tone holes [also called finger holes] located on the lower part of the main body. The sound is produced by a fipple at the upper end of the main body of the fujara.

Citations: Bibliography; Eischek, Oskár 2006 Fujara : The Slovak Queen of European Flutes. Bratislava: Hudobné centrum. ISBN 978-80-88884-91-0 ; Garnett, Rod 2004. Flutes of Slovakia: fujara, koncovka, šesťdierková píšťalka and dvojačka ; Laramie, Wyoming University of Wyoming. pp. 8–10. OCLC 55993856 ; Rychlik, Bohuslav Bob; American Musical Instrument Society (May 27, 2010). Folk Music from the Slovak Mountains: Lecture / Demonstration of the Fujara and Other Overtone Flutes – Benjamin Botkin Folklife Lecture Series. Thomas Jefferson Building: American Folklife Center ; Websites ;

Name: Fujara. Type: Aerophones > Flute > Duct > External. Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12 Country: Slovakia. Region: Continental & East Europe.

Description: The fujara [in Slovakian [ˈfujara]) originated in central Slovakia as a large sophisticated folk shepherd’s overtone fipple flute of unique design. It is technically a contrabass in the tabor pipe class.

Features: Ranging from 160 mm to 200 cm long and in 1.7 metres in length. The fujara is tuned in the available keys A / G or F. It has three tone holes [also called finger holes] located on the lower part of the main body. The sound is produced by a fipple at the upper end of the main body of the fujara.

Citations: Bibliography; Eischek, Oskár 2006 Fujara : The Slovak Queen of European Flutes. Bratislava: Hudobné centrum. ISBN 978-80-88884-91-0 ; Garnett, Rod 2004. Flutes of Slovakia: fujara, koncovka, šesťdierková píšťalka and dvojačka ; Laramie, Wyoming University of Wyoming. pp. 8–10. OCLC 55993856 ; Rychlik, Bohuslav Bob; American Musical Instrument Society (May 27, 2010). Folk Music from the Slovak Mountains: Lecture / Demonstration of the Fujara and Other Overtone Flutes – Benjamin Botkin Folklife Lecture Series. Thomas Jefferson Building: American Folklife Center ; Websites ;