Playing Over Rhythm – Native American Flute
Playing Over Rhythm – Native American Flute

[Slow, rhythmic music] [Native American flute playing over rhythm] Playing over rhythm is what this month’s FluteCast and Flute Newsletter are all about I’m playing over a track called “Cetacean” It is in my left ear so I can hear it I’ll use it to walk you though my approach to playing over rhythm It’s a very simple technique We will let you play over this rhythm And we’ll also let you play over a drum circle later These are great techniques to practice with So that when the rhythm situation arises You’re ready for it A really simple approach for me First of all … I just listen to the music And start moving to it You won’t find a musician who does not move to the rhythm And as you move to the rhythm, start breathing to it Breathe … in time to the rhythm And then go for the flute You don’t need to be fancy when you start Just play long tones After a while you can start getting fancy You can start including melody … shorter notes … I’ll play for a while and then we’ll let you play over this rhythm Later on we’ll tell you how to download this track It’s a great track to get experience with it Listen Move Breathe and Play [flute playing] Give it a try … pick up a flute Listen … move … breathe … and play [rhythm background music] I hope you enjoyed that That was the “Cetacean” backing track It was recorded a couple of years ago at Flute Haven It’s on the web site We’ll give you a download link at the end to the full six-minute backing track Next up is a drum circle. This was a special experience Fortunately it was recorded I was at this fantastic drum circle at a workshop of Music for People This is an organization that focuses on expressive music-making, improvisation, across all instruments and across all levels of experience. This was a session on percussion and drumming led by Mary Knysh. It’s great because she uses people’s names to generate different rhythms. She uses names to generate three-quarter rhythms and four-quarter rhythms. We don’t often play in three-quarter time. You can use people’s name to generate a rhythm, even pieces of fruit to generate a rhythm. So try playing over this as if it was a community drum circle. Community drum circles are great – you can take your flute, especially a high flute. Most community music settings are open and accepting to other instruments Take a high flute and, if the facilitator is open to you playing, just play over the top. You’ll get some experience playing in a non-threatening situation. So try it now – grab a flute – and play over these different sections of a drum circle in three-quarter and four-quarter rhythm time.>>Mary Knysh (facilitator): Now who has a three-syllable name? “Bre – a – na” Look at what happens to our body So play with that dance The Bre-a-na Dance Feel that in your body Accentuate the dance You really take it in physically Now – the Big Beat – just play the “Bre” But play your hands in the air Now you’ve got more space Play with it – here we go Fill the space quietly and keep the big “Bre” Keep the dance alive [Call and Response] Bring it down – back to “One” Anybody have a four-syllable name? “O-li-vi-a” Air drum in between Fill it in now [Try playing flute over this Drumming] And back to the big “O” And come back to “One” Whisper “One”>>Clint Goss: So we hope you enjoyed playing over the “Cetacean” backing track and the drum circle “Cetacean” is free thanks to the people who recorded it It’s available on the Flute Haven web site. And also the Music for People organization hosts workshops. They do about four of five workshops every year on expressive music-making. If you would like to sign up for our newsletter, the monthly newsletter has another side to these techniques. The video and newsletter talk about the same subject from different angles. You can go to to sign up for our newsletter and there is a link for our workshops. If you would like to join us at one of our workshops, These are the kind of techniques we do at workshops We have people playing over rhythm, in ensembles playing flute with rhythm, And, as always, we hope you can join us! [Outtakes]

11 thoughts on “Playing Over Rhythm – Native American Flute”

  1. Carolyn Viola says:

    BRILLIANT CLINT! BRAVO!!! Wonderful way to ease in! Excellent direction, inspiring video!

  2. harevis says:

    Thanks for that video Clint! 🙂

  3. Nadine Hightower says:

    Nice!  I like that you added the rain stick. I loved the "name" game. Great way to teach rhythm . My first name is Dorita and my younger daughter is Tomacina. We had fun with that.

  4. Edel Alejandro says:

    so nice to listen to the sound of flute… gives me peace…..thanks for sharing it with us….

  5. Terri Medwoman says:

    I took your technique to heart and really practiced it. I ordered the Jam Tracks in G minor and I was amazed how fast with your technique, I was creating songs. It has added a new world to my flute playing..than you so much. Everyone should go to your website and get your news letter. Lots of great tips and info 🙂

  6. Te Hapu says:


  7. Two Greasy Italians marco a. klein says:

    Very noce!!!

  8. GlenGH says:

    Great video really enjoyed it! The link you provided to the backing tack does not work any longer

  9. Eduardo Garcia says:

    great video, thx Clint!

  10. Tim Bacchus says:

    Thank you for this

  11. ukulelechriswilson says:

    Thank you so much ! Soothing and relax your sound and Asiatic Scale.

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