After the announcement of the discovery of what might be the oldest instrument in the world, I felt quite inspired to research it and try to bring a semblance of it to my customers.
The original was found in a cave in Germany and said to be around 35,000 years old when Europe was being populated during the Ice Age. Mammoth relics were found in the same layers the flute was found.
The 13 inch Ice Age Flute is finished naturally, bound with an earth-toned binding, giving it an ancient look.
Every Ice Age Flute comes with a flute bag to keep your flute safe.
To PLay: Lift the V shaped notch against a soft grin. Press upwards and tilt while gently spitting out water mellon seeds. Lift and tilt. Keep the lifting pressure but once you have sound you can stop tilting.
Construction of the flute: I placed the top hole in back to better fit the hand. The broken hole at the bottom of the original is complete and I cut the flute at a harmonious note in tune with the flute.
This is one of those flutes that will bring you Back To The Fluture!
The original flute was extremely thin and short giving it a very high pitch. My flute is wider and longer, giving it a much more mellow sound which is likely the direction this flute would have evolved into as flutes moved into being made in Europe out of wood.
Research on the Ice Age Flute
Researchers working at two Stone Age German sites have unearthed a nearly complete flute made from a vulture's forearm as well as sections of three mammoth-ivory flutes.
These 35,000- to 40,000-year-old finds are the oldest known musical instruments in the world, says archaeologist and project director Nicholas Conard of the University of Tuebingen in Germany.
The bone flute, which excavators found in 12 pieces, and the ivory flutes were discovered in the summer of 2008 at Hohle Fels cave,(below) when people first migrated to Europe.
The preserved portion of the bone flute is about 8.5 inches long and one-third of an inch wide. Finely incised lines near four finger holes probably indicated where to carve these openings using stone tools.
Musicians presumably blew into an end of the bone flute that contains two V-shaped notches. The researchers plan to make a replica of the ancient flute to investigate how it was played and what type of sounds it made.
Erik's take on this instrument, made of bamboo, is deeper than the thinner bone flute was. However, Erik believes that his interpretation is one of the possible deeper, richer flutes into which the Ice Age flute would have evolved.
UPDATE: Erik delighted to know that his bamboo Ice Age flute has been brought back to Hohle Fels cave and has been played there. It must have been a Kodak moment into our musical past.
Erik the Flutemaker
14701 SW 18th Court
Davie, FL 33325