Flutopedia - an Encyclopedia for the Native American Flute

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Welcome to Flutopedia.com — an evolving encyclopedia and on-line book dedicated to the Native American flute. It provides information and resources for the Native American flute in particular, but also on aspects of flute music and world flutes in general.

Indian Courtship - about 1853

Indian Courtship – about 1853 More information

You can use the menu of topics at the top of each page, view the pages sequentially (like a book) with the Previous PageNext Page buttons on the top-right, visit the Table of Contents, or check out What's New for recent updates. And you'll find a lot of information here at widely varying levels of detail:


Please realize that Flutopedia is an evolving resource. As I research new topics and find relevant information, content is added. This means that some corners of this site are still incomplete, and some topics are just placeholders at the moment.

Also realize that my main role in providing this site is to locate, organize, and provide access to content that may be useful to your journey with this instrument. Only a small portion of the information here represents my original research and opinions. I have provided as much access as possible to the original sources, so please follow those links and references.

Clint's flute wall — May 2014

Clint's flute wall — May 2014. Larger image

You will find some areas of Flutopedia that only have only a tangential relationship to the Native American flute. In particular, explorations into ancient music and the origins of music bear only in a distant and indirect way on the core topics of the Native American flute. These portions of the web site are an expression of my research interests from time to time — please just skip on by if these topics do not suit your interests.

This web site represents my current level of research and understanding, and it will gradually evolve over time. If you know of resources that you believe could improve this web site and be of benefit to the community, please contact me to point them out.

Discussion Groups

There are two public forums for discussions about this web site, one on Facebook and one on Yahoo. Please join at one (or both) to be notified of new content on this web site and participate in discussions about future directions.

Or … sign up for our monthly flute newsletter … we'll keep you informed of new content, provide articles about Native flutes, and keep you up to date with current event information:

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Sound Libraries

Beginning in August 2021, we release a set of Sound Libraries for Electronic Wind Instruments that capture the sound of some of my Native American flutes. These are freely available for download and licensed under a CC-BY Open Source license.


We began developing the “FluteCast” video series in 2015 and have been publishing them monthly. These provide a different approach to content, and are sprinkled throughout Flutopedia on various pages. All videos are directly accessible on FluteCast.com. Here are three popular FluteCast videos that provide an introduction to playing Native American flutes:

Basics #1

Basics #2

Basics #3

And here is a link to the Singing Ponies — you can play along with an F# minor flute:

Hestekor: The Singing Ponies

Cover of The Etude Magazine by Conrad Dickel - June 1932

Cover of The Etude Magazine
by Conrad Dickel – June 1932 Larger Image

The Native Flute Handbook

The Native Flute Handbook

Click to download the Native Flute Handbook.
There is no cost for this 400+ page PDF book. Download

A companion to this web site is the Native Flute Handbook — a 400+ page PDF book available at no charge. Visit www.NativeFluteHandbook.com to download a copy.


The Native American flute has a long tradition in North America, a tradition that has seen a renaissance in the last several decades. Flutopedia strives to bridge the traditional elements of the Native American flute (see Honoring the Tradition) as well as serving those who have come to play the instrument because it gives us a musical voice and encourages us to “play from the heart”.

The right information at the right time can open doors to understanding, but it's easy to get overloaded with information. If you're trying to “plow through” some section of this web site and start to get that “swamped / lost / I'll never get this” feeling, it's time to shut down the computer, pick up a flute, head to the back porch, and just play. In the words of the pioneering anthropologist, Alice C. Fletcher, “the emotions of the heart of man are more in common the world over than are his intellectual ideas” ([Fletcher 1894]).

I also hope that this web site can serve as a starting point for exploring the Native American flute and your musicality more deeply.


If you have feedback on the content of this web site, please Contact Me. In particular, I would love to hear about any errors (of any type) that you find, suggested topics, or pointers to more Native American flute resources. Please note the title of the page if you are reporting an error.

— Clint Goss, Ph.D.

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