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Playing a 38 strings Kantele. Traditional Finnish instrument.

Hulusi Chinese flute
Hulusi chinese flute

The name of the instrument southestern China traditional instrument Hulusi comes The instrument's name comes from the Chinese words hulu, meaning "gourd," and si, meaning "silk" (because of the smooth  pure and very like clarinet or oboe  sound it makes). Though obviusly related to chinese music it's become a very popular instrument in many countries.

It's an end blown free reed wind instrument. It is held vertically and has three bamboo pipes which pass through a gourd (wind chest; the center pipe has finger holes and the outer two are drone-.  Sometimes one of the pipes is ornamental and has only one drone. . The drone pipe has a finger hole, which allows it to be stopped. HuluSi is especially known for its unrelenting, yet soft, moody tone.

The hulusi was originally used primarily in the Yunnan  (means "south of the clouds") province by the Dai and other non-Han ethnic groups but is now played throughout China, and hulusi are manufactured in such northern cities as Tianjin.

The Hulusi or Gourd flute is one of the intruments with a more distinct "chinese" sound. Link to Melody of China with a streamable mp3 here

Hulusi fingering chart (english)

Above: Hulusi fingering chart  as shown in Melody of China website. Click on image to see bigger.

Below a performance with an hulusi highlighted as  solo instrument so you can see how this simple flute can convey the feelings of a trained player.


Don't know if you might be able to play it?
Here you can see a video of some fast tips to start to learn to play the hulusi    



Where to buy one:


There are a lot of inexpensive hulusis from all sort of chinese importers... Wether if they're of high quality or playable I really don't know till I grab one, and I will come and edit information as soon as I can guess that. My experience when buying instruments you don't know is that look for an actual sample or avoid to go for the cheaper option.

Above: example of hulusi found in ebay

You can surf yourself hulusi in ebay and find a lot of hulusis chinese flutes available there. Some are really professional looking, and I'd recommend to sort out by price and not go for the cheaper one as you risk to get a not tuned or playable but a beautiful souvenir. I found some stores like interactchina and others that seemed to have rather good ones. Hope to be able to update when I have more information.

 hulusi melody of china
Above: Hulusi from Melody of China


Melody of china is a rather complete store for all sorts of chinese instruments, it features a long section of wind instruments including some nice looking Hulusis with samples of how they sound. 

Have a look to Shopping china now, they have a selection of chinese musical instruments.

Nadishana folk instruments store also list one on sale. As he´s a player, I'd say this is a rather reliable source and shipping from Europe and good thing that you can see the actual instrument plyaed.


Some other interesting links  

Hulusi in VST (virtual instrument)

For those making music with the computer and still interesting in the sound of the hulusi you can purchase for 60$ ChineHulusi from the company Kong Audio

 hulusi vst 

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Playing a Membrane bagpipe. Made from recycled/reused materials

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Vladiswar Nadishana Playing various exotic instruments.

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Playing the Ugly stick in the kitchen. :)

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Playing a hammer dulcimer with fingernails

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Playing the laser harp connected to a synth. The harp is driven by an Arduino (Boarduino varation) and connected to the impOSCar VSTi software synthesizer, the TAOS sensor array sits on the floor in it's own stand.

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Playing a calliope. Funny music

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I introduce the vegetable musical instruments made this time.
There are eight kinds of vegetable musical instruments.
Please enjoy various sounds.


Then, let's introduce the vegetable musical instruments that can have been done this time.
It is a carrot ocarina first.
And, it is an ocarina of a white radish in Japan that can have done this time.
The octave is geted down from the carrot ocarina.
The broccoli ocarina was made.
A good sound is not heard because only such a broccoli was obtained this time. And, a carrot ocarina of the slide type and this carrot ocarina is different the sound hole. When the breath is put here, something is heard. It shaped
The paprika was punctured. When the breath is put here, such a sound is heard. It is an owl. Carrot panpipe. When the breath is put in this, such a sound is heard. Similary asparagus panpipe was made. However, a good sound is not heard. It is a trumpet of the cucumber and the paprika in the end. There were musical instruments that looked alike also in the vegetable orchestra. Moreover, when musical instruments can be done, I introduces it. Thank you.

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Playing various home made instruments: 3 string cookie-tin banjo with weed, Tambiro, Fiddle-Gurdy, 4 string wash-tub bass, Fiddle, Low D Tin-Whistle, Octave Mandolin

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