Bagpipes and Didgeridoo

My friend Lorin is blogging about bagpipes at “The Pipers Drone”. In it he mentions Didgeridoocircular breathing as a means of generating the volume of air Bagpipe2required to make noise. Oops! I meant music. This brought to mind how aborigines play the Didgeridoo with big puffed out cheeks. So I mentioned it to him as a comment to his blog. This blog is an expansion on what I was thinking as I was only allowed a few words in his comment section with no ability to add pictures or hyperlinks!

Anyway bagpipe players need to do the puffed out cheeks as well. But you can use the circular breathing technique with nearly any mouth blown instrument. It might require a bit of practice though.

The sounds of the Didgeridoo reminded me of another sound I have heard from Mongolia, though it is also performed in Tibet, throat singing. All these ways of changing our environment and filling it with interesting vibrations. Music to some and noise to others, but that has always been the case when artists express their souls.

Having been a musician in my youth I know the pain and reward of performing on an instrument. Though it has been a while I sometimes dream of an alternate life where I had continued to be a musician. Now I rarely pick up my guitar let alone play it.

Being a musician in my humble opinion is a fine life if it works for you. I admit to being more of a mercenary and unable to deal with artists. But that musician is still inside wishing to express his feelings through songs. Especially at sunset when it is time to make music with something like the Bagpipes and Didgeridoo!Instruments

One thought on “Bagpipes and Didgeridoo

  1. Geary, Normally pipers do not have to “puff out the cheeks” when playing the bagpipes to keep a constant note or tone going. This is why the bag was added to the pipes originally. As a piper, when we practice we use a practice chanter, similar to the chanter on the bagpipes but not as loud and taking less air. Even though it does take less air, you still have to stop to breath or, you can use circular breathing, which as you pointed out means that you fill your cheeks with air and use the air in the cheeks to keep the notes / tone going while you inhale through your nose.

    Bagipes and Didgeridoo? Add in some drums and you have a sort of tribal music that may have been heard around a fire at a clan gathering. To hear this type of music today one only has to check out the Wicked Tinkers, a truly wickedly good group.

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