My didge came

My didgeridoo just arrived. I’ve never played one, so I bought a cheap-o for $25. I can make the drone, but I’ll need to try this ‘circular breathing’ thing. That sounds difficult.

‘Exercise 1’ in the pamphlet says to fill my mouth with water and to blow a stream using only my tongue and cheek muscles, while breathing normally through my nose. I haven’t tried it with water, but I can do it with air. But I don’t have enough air in my mouth to vibrate my lips.


This was supposed to go in MPSIMS.

Play your digeridoo, Blue,
play your digeridoo.
Keep playing ‘til I shoot thro’ Blue,
play your digerydoo.
Altogether now!

Lou, wasn’t it?

Tan me hide when I’m dead, Fred,
tan me hide when I’m dead.
So we tanned his hide when he died Clyde,
And that’s it hanging on the shed.

That’s from the ‘banned’ verse.

Right. ‘Blue’ played the didge.

Well I’ll bet you a kangaroo
We could all dance to a didjeridoo…

So why the didgeridoo?

Brief hijack - on the liner notes to a Paul Kelly album I’ve got, there is a story about Ernie Dingo who was supposed to play didgeridoo on the album, but turned up at the studio without it. What to do? So he nipped down to the hardware store, got a length of PVC pipe and some masking tape for the mouth end used that instead.

I’ve liked them for a long time. IIRC, they used them in part of Gallipoli. They also used them in a scene in The Right Stuff. I love the sound. (I also like bagpipes, FWIW. And I was enraptured when I watched a drum band on parade at Mardi Gras.)

I just hope I can learn to play it. I don’t know if there are any didge players up here in the PNW. But if things go according to plan and I get back to L.A., then I know there’s a guy who hangs out at Venice Beach who can give me lessons. (He makes didgeridoos from PVC pipes and sells them on the beach.)

That circular breathing thing is a killer.

How exactly does one exhale through the mouth and inhale throught the nose simultaneously, I’ve tried doing it but it just seems like its impossible!!!

Puff up your cheeks so they are big and round, and the natural elasticity of your mouth will provide some pressure. Hold the air in your mouth, and breathe normally through your nose.

Once you master that, just let some air out of your mouth while breathing in, and then once you’ve inhaled, just breathe out of your mouth exclusively.

Generally you have to breathe in pretty quick, because your mouth doesn’t hold all that much air.