Bamboo flutes

People have been making musical instruments out of bamboo for thousands of years.  The oldest bamboo flute dates back to 433 BC and was discovered in the Tomb of Marquis Yi of Zeng at the Suizhou site, Hubei province, China. 

Over the ages, people around the world have transformed hollow bamboo tubes into sweet sounding musical instruments.  Instrument makers from China, India, Korea, Japan, Polynesia, Cambodian and many other countries have their own unique take on the construction of bamboo flutes.  

At Beautiful Bamboo, we receive many inquiries from bamboo flute makers.  Recently, Erik the Flutemaker, from Davie, FL stopped by with his associate, Leo.  

Erik the Flutemaker plays one of his 'Starry Night' flutes at Beautiful Bamboo

After having read about the different varieties on our website, Erik and Leo came to take a tour of the demonstration gardens and see in person the different clumping bamboos pictured on our website. 

Leo serenades us with melodic sounds

When it comes to making flutes, clumping bamboos are better than running varieties because the distance between the culm sections in clumping bamboo is considerably longer than it is in runners.  Other consideration include the diameter of the canes, the wall thickness and the coloring of the bamboo exterior. 

While Leo watches, Erik (on right) shows Ralph where to drill holes on a Bambusa multiplex 'Silverstripe' cane.  In the background stands a large clump of bamboo of the same type of bamboo.

As we toured the property with Erik and Leo, we looked for bamboos with the specific qualities needed to build the type of flutes Erik and Leo construct.

After choosing an appropriate pole, Erik give it an initial cleaning with a handful of pine needles and bamboo leaves picked up off the ground

1 comment:

  1. I'm from the Philippines and I was amazed with the fact that even a Japanese bamboo flute looks simple in appearance but it is actually very difficult to play. I've read that if plays by the master this bamboo flute create an amazing, subtle, sensual music - prized as being perfect for meditation and relaxation. It’s beautiful, soulful sound made that best hear when you are taking a good rest or about to sleep. shakuhachi