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Branch Flutes

Jon Sherman playing a double branch flute

Jon Sherman playing a
double branch flute.
Photo: Mike Oitzman,
September 30, 2008Larger image

Some flute makers begin their flutes from a branch of a tree rather than from lumber that has been milled. This method of making flute is typically used by makers who build highly individualized instruments and craft flutes one at a time.

The construction techniques vary widely, but some makers of branch flutes will attempt to split the branch down a centerline, hollow out the inside, and then mate the halves back together for the completed flute.

Here is a pair of branch flutes made by Bob Willasch that I photographed at the Native Rhythms Festival in November 2010:

Branch Flutes by Bob Willasch

Branch flutes by Bob Willasch Larger image

 

Branch Flutes by Bob Willasch

Branch flutes by Bob Willasch Larger image

And here is a branch flute crafted by Billy Crowbeak Faluski of Woodpecker Creations Flutes. This flute was crafted as a story flute for The Great Blue Heron Cherokee Legend. Visit this YouTube video to hear the flute and its story.

Branch Flutes by Billy Crowbeak Faluski

Branch flute by Billy Crowbeak Faluski Larger image

 

Branch Flutes by Bob Willasch

Detail of branch flute by Billy Crowbeak Faluski Larger image

 
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