Interesting Instruments- Bird Whistle!

Getting swept up in summer is easy to do.  My time away from “hitting the books,” going to classes and studying is relieving and giving me a lot of opportunity for professional exploration, summertime activities and personal projects! This past weekend I took a quick trip out to the big city- NewYork! I pleasantly stumbled upon a huge festival running down 6th avenue that was swarming with fun vendors and “eclectic” cultural instruments.  Tents filled with kalimba’s and djembe’s and blaring traditional jamaican music were just the tip of the iceberg! I was attracted to my favorite stand first and foremost by the sounds that were coming from it! It was a asian gentleman and his posse of bird whistlers! It was wonderful.  Everyone had a bird whistle- each one unique and different and they were making the most interesting noises. Not only was the man “way cool” even though he barley spoke english, but he genuinely wanted to tell me about the instruments and show me how to get the best sounds out of them.  It was so insightful.  This man was just so happy to sell me his bird whistles, and to demonstrate them for me.  It was such a neat “musical experience” standing on the streets of New York playing a hand carved bird whistle with a man i had never met, and still we had this experience together.  Here’s a short clip of the bird whistle, what it looks like, and the sounds it makes.  Some ways to use it you ask?

  • A group bird call with the elderly or with children!
  • In a small group (2 clients) have them have a conversation using the bird whistles to practice non-verbal communication.
  • A bird chorus/play- acting out a beautiful bird chorus.  Some clients can even take a solo when directed.

Thanks for checking back!


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Filed under Activities, Music Therapy, Musical Resources, Student Life

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