Saturday, October 13, 2012

Moving into Native American flutes . . .

Part of the stuff I started to plan for when I was first diagnosed with thyroid cancer, was to accelerate my efforts around learning to play the Native American flute.

If you have ever gone to a massage therapist's office, that flute based meditation music you probably heard in the background during the massage is usually from a Native American flute.

I've been researching wooden flutes for several years now.  Why?  I just love the sound they make.
They are soothing and calming, something I can always do with more of.  With the prospect of losing my singing speaking voice during two thyroid / throat surgeries, I decided to go ahead and take the plunge.  In case I lost my voice, I wanted to start learning another instument that might have to become a new music voice for me.

Well, all is going good with the voice, it's getting stronger . . . and it will be back to full strength after I start some voice lessons soon.  But I am far enough along now in learning how to play the flute that I now developed a genuine interest in continuing on this new instrumental journey.

So far so good along the way so far . . . it's all about breath technique, memorizing scales and finger placement.  I have two flutes now, a High Spirits Sparrow Hawk (Key of A) made of cedar, as well as a High Spirits Red-Tail Hawk (Key of G) in walnut.  Odell Borg at High Spirits has been great to find time to speak to me several times by phone to answer my varied list of questions.  A great guy.  He has been making flutes since 1990.  They play well, and are somewhat artistic in their design.

What I have been consistently told my all . . .  if you have no experience with a woodwind instrument, consider starting with a Key of A flute.  The Key of G is more compatible with most instruments.  Down the road, I want to get a bass D flute.  The sound they make is haunting.

Butch Hall is another well respected Native American flute maker who lives in Weatherford, TX.  I've communicated with him by email, and hope to visit him in November or December. I may have the funds then for the purchase of one of his cedar flutes in F#, the key most commonly used in Native American music.

The history of the Native American flute is readily available on-line and in print, and the best instruction book is probably the one written by R. Carlos Nakai.  I have it ordered.

I put a new link list in the column on the right about Native American flute stuff.

God's grace still amazes me . . . ><>

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