Pipe (pine wood, reed)

Pipe (pine wood, reed)
Pipe, Teruel. Lydia Zarceño. 'Copyleft' Luis Á. Payno y Lydia Zarceño

Pipe (pine wood, reed)

This is an example of certain pastoral wind instruments made from a single piece of wood with a simple reed and 6 or 7 finger-holes. Similar models are found in many parts of Iberia, although they are disappearing, as hardly anyone makes or plays them.

Both the bell (wide end) and the mouthpiece which protects the reed are carved directly from a single piece of wood. Sometimes it is decorate using a penknife, as is the case for this example from Rubielos de Mora in Teruel. This one is made from pine boughs, the ends of the branches which are softer and easier to work with, and the outside of the tube is square. However, instruments are also made of elder wood (like the fife from Campoo in Cantabria) or fig-tree (pipe from El Torno, Cáceres), adapting to locally available materials.

These and other instruments had no fixed measurements, but were approximate by intuition and tradition, i.e. by copying other examples or following the maker’s likes and skills. The tuning is not accurate either, and the placing of finger-holes seems to be according to comfort or ease of fingers. The tunes adapt to the pitch, or the note is changed until the correct pitch is found.

 

 

Sound of  pipe: click on black triangle