First steps, advices for beginners

This picture above is meant to show all the notes that the shepjerdflute, sheperd pipe, is capable of producing. However, remember that there is no single way of playing the pipe, or any other traditional instrument for that matter, given the fact that there is no academic consensus on how they should be played. Despite all this, this image is a good basis on top of which we can expand further.

As you can see, the image portrays three blowing forces, which correspond to the first three overtones in the harmonic series. The first level corresponds to the first octave, the second level to the second octave and the third level to the fifth above the second octave.


the firsd C of first octav is deeply intonate. 1-6

Usualy we use the secound octavs C note whit octave fracture 1-5

In some situacion also you can undertake this note, do not worried about it …

More details:

Message to classically-trained musicians:

The shepherd pipe and the kaval are traditional instruments, and as such studying them should be approached in a very specific manner, which is to be followed especially by classically-trained musicians.

Here are some concepts that these musicians ought to be aware of:

  • The shepherdflutes, shepherd pipes, are not chromatic instruments, and as such they are tuned to a specific key. Changing the key means changing the instrument.
  • They can’t play halftones. There are some exceptions to this rule, but they are applicable in the context of different dialects of traditional music.
  • The unicity of these instruments stands in the existence of some microtonal elements that can’t be found in western European classical music. These microtonal notes, namely the neutral third and the neutral seventh, that are similar to the American blue-note, are a characteristic of the traditional music of the Carpathian arch. Approaching these concepts takes precision and humbleness.
  • Back in the day the pipe and the kaval didn’t use to be tuned to the international standard frequency of 440-HZ, however pipe makers have started to tune to this frequency in order for the pipes to be usable in an orchestral ensemble. In order to properly intonate the musician needs to know the correct embouchure. These stylistic elements will be discussed in their respective sections.

Special thanks to translat for our frend from workshops:

Alex Manea