Flute can be cool…

Playing flute isn’t all about fluffy French conservatoire pieces or Quantz:


And what about this young gentleman improvising to Song to a Cuckoo?


I was once made fun of, by a friend’s boyfriend, when I told him I wanted to play jazz flute. Seems like he didn’t know about these musicians. They’re worth checking out on You Tube. Some of my favorites include Ali Ryerson, Jane Bunnett, Dave Valentin, and Robert Dick:


Yes, Robert Dick’s embouchure hole is sliding around. He invented that. And what about Greg Patillo’s beatboxing bass flute?

What I love about flute, and what makes it different from other woodwinds, is the open embouchure hole (where your mouth goes). The open hole makes it easy to sing into the instrument, roll in and out for a special sliding effect or microtonal playing, play ghostly whistle tones and other extended techniques.

So, if you’re a flute player and haven’t moved beyond Syrinx by Debussy, try improvising on some interesting scales while singing and playing at the same time. Or try some of the other extended techniques from the link above.

See, flute is cool.

1 thought on “Flute can be cool…

  1. Veronica Negus-Green

    I totally agree, flute is cool! So much more than just classical or Jethro Tull (do you get the Jethro comment ALL the time??). I saw Susie Miget in concert years ago, she was/is a local Iowa jazz flutist and she was incredible.

    I love your blog! Well-written, quirky, informative. I’m keeping you in mind for Nora when she’s old enough…we’ll see which instrument she’ll gravitate towards. 🙂

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