ince the beginning of time people have played music for relaxation and spiritual upliftment. This is because sound has a transforming property beyond words. Most of us have experienced feeling a bit low and all of a sudden being elevated to a state of joy by a piece of music.
Over the ages an enormous variety of instruments have been used to tune us into music and to express outwardly with sound what we feel within. Perhaps the simplest way of making sounds is with wind so it is not surprising that flutes are the oldest instruments on earth. Flutes indeed predate humankind. There have always been trees for instance where a hollowed out branch has broken off and the rush of the wind across its opening has produced the sound of the flute.
Flutes then have a special quality all of their own since they are played with the breath. And just as the breath is the most vital energy source for the body, the sound of the flute is food for the soul. When we play or hear a flute we are resonating with an eternal vibration. This is the spirit of life.
Throughout history bamboo has been a favoured material for flute making. This is due to its naturally hollow interior and wonderful resonance. Another reason for its use is that no two pieces are the same so a flute made from bamboo is truly a unique item and possesses a personality of its own.
started making bamboo flutes about 20 years ago. At the time I was living in the northern area of Australia and bamboo of all sorts was very plentiful. Bamboo was a material that somehow always attracted me. For some reason on a deep level I had a natural affinity with the material. I don't know what it was exactly but bamboo seemed like a sort of miracle plant. It had so many qualities and so many uses.
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on earth. It is also stronger than timber and naturally hollow which makes it ideal for flute making. Also the number of varieties and species available is staggering, It has an incredible amount of uses too numerous to mention. All in all an amazing plant for sure.
One day I decided to have a go at making a flute. I cut a piece of bamboo and with only a few very basic tools I made my first flute. If I remember the first flute I made was a small side blown flute. I didn't have a clue what I was doing of course. Just going on my intuition. I think I had a tin whistle or something similar which I took the measurements for the holes from. I knew nothing about curing the bamboo and so the first flute I made was from a totally green piece. Needless to say it ended up way out of tune.
Being a perfectionist as I am it started me on a sort of quest to learn how to make bamboo flutes. I was living a fairly nomadic lifestyle at the time. Never remaining in one place for very long. But wherever I went there was always bamboo within short reach. Since the tools I needed to make flutes were very few it was always easy to whip up a flute or two anywhere I was. And so it went on. Travelling around and making a flute here and there.
Although for many years I never took it very seriously one thing was for sure. I loved to make bamboo flutes. I found I always had a few flutes with me wherever I went and to my surprise I sold quite a few like this. People would ask me where I got the flutes. I told them I made them and just like this they sold.
The thing about my flutes was that although they were not always in tune, the quality of them impressed a lot of people. In those days most of the bamboo flutes you could get were the cheap type on Indian flutes made from very weak bamboo. My flutes were made form the local species of bamboo growing natively in Australia and were incredibly strong even though I knew nothing about burn curing and things like that.
One day about early 1990 I had the flash to make flutes for a living. At that time I was getting a bit more settled and spending more time in one place. I think at one time I actually managed to stay in one place for 6 months or so. A definite record for me. Anyway it gave me the opportunity to set up a very basic workshop where I could take the flute making to another level.
My curiosity about flutes never ceased. I tried to get my hands on any information about flutes I could. Remember at that time things like the Internet did not exist and researching information, especially about obscure topics such as bamboo flute making was a very time consuming process. I'd travel around going to libraries to see what I could find and I'd follow up leads I found. Wherever I went I tried to get any information about making flutes. Needless to say I could not find much useful information at all.
To my surprise there was very little material around on flute making in general and on bamboo flute making I could find nothing at all. And what I could get on flutes at all was next to useless. I remember I did manage to get hold of some information about making a rubber hose recorder type of flute. It was very basic but did give the measurements for the positions of the holes. This was a start but when I tried to make a bamboo flute using those measurements the flute was totally out of tune.
I decided then that I'd just have to figure it all out myself because I'd spent so much time trying to find information on flute making and was really not getting too far. And so it went from there. Like many other things I've done I ended up working it all out myself.
ell the years went by and I made flutes for a living for quite a few years. All the time I was learning and experimenting with different techniques. The Internet age came about and I set up a website for the flutes. I was surprised to find that it became very successful. I sold a lot of flutes online all over the world. At the same time I was constantly being asked for information on how to make bamboo flutes. People would ask me if I could point then in the direction of any sources of flute making information.
Again I started some more research on sources of flute making information. This time on the Internet. To my surprise I still could not find much useful material. There was a little bit of information about very basic stuff but nothing with much depth. So the inevitable happened. I decided to write my own book on making bamboo flutes. The result is what you see here. A compilation of the methods I've worked out myself over the years.
Now flute making is an immense subject. Like many things it can go on forever. When I first got the idea to write a book on bamboo flute making I had the vision of a grand work in all the depth that I could imagine. After I started on the book I realized that such a work would really take many years to complete. And as I was getting continuous requests for the book I decided to at least get something out that would be a good start anyway.
Consequently I anticipate that this ebooks will always be a sort of work in progress. I will be updating it regularly as I see fit. The actual techniques for making many other different types of flutes will be added in time as well as any new methods that I come across. In view of this and as an appreciation to those who purchase the book I'll be offering Free lifetime upgrades.
That's right when an updated version of the ebooks is released everybody who has purchased a previous version will be able to download the new version for free for life. That's how confident I am that the book will fill a huge need not only for those that wish to make a bamboo flute but many others as well.
should mention that there is much more to flute making than first meets the eye. By this I am referring to the effects that making and playing bamboo flutes can have on ones life. Obviously the ins and outs of flute making are quite involved. But the effects of flute making and playing with regards to one's personal growth and unfoldment of consciousness can be incredibly far reaching.
I speak not only from the changes that flute making has had in my life on all levels but also on the powerful positive influences that my flutes have had on other people's lives as well. Indeed I've had reports of people whose whole life has been profoundly transformed through being exposed to my bamboo flutes.
As mentioned before playing a bamboo can open a lot of doorways by helping to tune you into the higher self on many levels. For example flute playing is fantastic for one's breathing and stilling the mind. The sound of the flute is incredibly uplifting for the Soul as well. And playing a bamboo flute that you've actually made yourself is another story altogether. It can take you to states of reality never before dreamed of.
These few words are just a hint of the many dimensions of bamboo flute making and playing. As this book is really only aimed at the making of bamboo flutes I will not deal any more with the spiritual and esoteric aspects here. However it's good to be aware of the other levels of bamboo flute making. In time I'll release another book on these things.
For now all I want to do is inspire you to have a go at making your own bamboo flutes and then be the judge. Like all things in life it's not for everybody. But for those with the desire and aptitude for bamboo flute making I wish you an incredible experience and journey.
All the best
Marek Gold - The Fluteman
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