This blog is dedicated to the sublime instruments called nose flutes and which produce the most divine sound ever. We have chosen to discard all the native models from S. Pacific and Asia, for they need fingering to be played. We'll concentrate on "buccal cavity driven" nose flutes : the well patented and trademarked metal or plastic ones, plus, by a condemnable indulgence, some wooden craft or home-made productions.

Apr 16, 2016

New Nose Flutes by Master Katada - Part I

Our Japanese friends are very generous. Just after I received a bunch of great nose flutes from Mr. Sawada (check this post), the postman delivered a box full of beautiful hanabue and experimental nose flutes from Japan: gift of Mr. Kunio Katada!

You certainly remember Mr. Kunio Katada, a.k.a Ki_Kanban. In 2011, we published a post (check here) about his limitless creativity and skill in wood working and inlays. But also his work with metal, cardboard... (You can follow the nose flute section of his blog). Ki Kanban is also at the origin of the Adachi nose flute Fuppi (フッピ). Remember these creations:

So, we were really excited to receive another box full of nose flutes!

In there, there were three kind of flutes: the regular Katada-san production, simple yet very precise, declined in different exotic woods and sizes; one nose flute dedicated to hands free playing with a specific stand, and astonishing small and radical bamboo nose flutes, the Kunimaru's (くにまるの鼻笛).

1 - The regular Adachi nose flute

As said earlier, « regular » doesn't mean average or banal. This nose flute is regular because it is regularly crafted by Mr. Katada, because this flute is the accomplishment of many trials to get it perfect. The shape is a standard; this is not a « research and design » instrument, but a reliable one dedicated to anyone.

Ki_Kanban sent me two samples of the normal size, and two of the mini version.

A - Normal size Adachi

Both flutes are smooth, finely sanded and varnished with a satin finish. There is no angle and they fit in your hand like a light pebble. The light colored one is composed by Japanese Keyaki wood (Zelkova serrata), with the center piece in Lauan mahogany from Indonesia (Shorea laevis). The dark nose flute has a beautiful main shield in Sitan rosewood (Pterocarpus santalinus), and the air duct is made of Kokutan makassar ebony (Diospyros celebica), both from Indonesia. Only beautiful and precious woods.

As told before, the wood work is very precise, and whereas the global shape is smooth and rounded, the technical parts are sharp and accurate. The labium is incredibly thin, and is was possible only by the use of very hard woods. So, it is not surprising these nose flutes are very good and precise instruments. The mouth window is rather small (±3mm high) and these hanabue are mainly sharp oriented.

B - Mini size Adachi

Kunio Katada sent me also two mini Adachis. They were made on the same pattern and shape than the regular ones, but just a little bit smaller, to fit wee faces or children.

These little babies are as smooth and satiny as their big sisters, and were crafted with the same care and precision. They received the same « golden K » stamping.

2 - The hands free Adachi and its stand

Another gift from Master Katada is a nose flute he especially developed for hands free playing, with its dedicated holder.

A - The hands free Adachi

This nose flute is a size XL! We saw the normal and the mini models, this one is incontestably a fatty! Here too, the same care in the craft, but associated to a deep impression of sturdiness. This is the nose flute for the Special Forces, to play sweet melopoeias under the massive hail of Operation Cast Lead! Indeed, this instrument features a thick locking shield over the air way.

For sure, Master Katada wanted a very steady and sturdy locking system, and he succeded. The tenon is not only glued, but also nicely pegged to the body...

B - The stand

The stand looks like a regular mouth harp stand, but certainly it is not. Not only Kunio Katada shaped it himself, using a shirt hanger and a smartphone stand, but also the claw looks totally different. Whilst an regular harmonica stand generally provides a double flat clamp, Ki Kanban's stand features a real jaw for the flute:

The result is super efficient: the nose flute is kept very firmly in the stand, and easy to access. It is not only a hands free system, but also a « mouth free » one.

To the Part II


Related links :

- Kunio Katada's blog

- New Nose Flutes by Master Katada - Part I
- New Nose Flutes by Master Katada - Part II


Apr 14, 2016

Videos with the new Bocarina® Pro

The new Bocarina® Pro has just been released, and nose flute players have already recorded videos to test the new instrument. Let's watch some of them!

Ladies first, the Incomparable Nosy Diva just pushed online two records: the Bach's Badinerie with a plastics Boc, and the Trout (Die Forelle) by Schubert, at her ceramics Bocarina® Pro:

Badinerie (J.-S. Bach):

Die Forelle (F. Schubert):

Our Japanese friends also made videos with the Bocarina® Pro. Our friend Hanabue114 (Mr. Jun Tanioka) recorded several, including an introduction to the new instrument, and a comparison with the regular one:


Comparison Pro/Regular:

Mr. Hideki Arai, from Japan too, made a great recording of « Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika » (the national Republic of South Africa anthem) recording:

Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika:

Mr. Makoto Yorokobi Nozaki (眞歓野崎) also made a video, available only on Facebook at this place

And we're sure there will be many more to come!

Apr 13, 2016

Two more Simmies!!

To hail the recent revival of NoseFlute.Org, our friend the Dutch whistle collector Piet Visser (check his blog) offered us two adorable vintage nose flutes! We don't know much about the mysterious Simmy (see here), but since Piet Visser is our only source and regularly find some, we're more and more prone to deduce it was a Dutch neusfluit.

So, we are very pleased to welcome those two new vintage babies! We love these funny and colorful nose flutes... And since we had formerly trade a pair of them, we are now the proud owner of a four pieces collection. Thank you a lot Piet!!

We also made a short stupid video with the Nosy Diva:

Apr 12, 2016

Very interesting experiment by Ken Tanaka

Mr. Ken Tanaka, Saitama, Japan, just published an experiment he did with a styrofoam food box. He cut a corner in a nose flute shape (so clever idea to get the 3D countour!) and stuck a smaller piece inside, with the help of adhesive tape. Look! :

Ken Tanaka made also a short video to show the very convincing result:

You can also check his Youtube Channel (nervousgoat860126) which contains many other interesting nose flute videos!

Apr 11, 2016

New RON Nose Flutes (Yoshihiro Sawada) !

Mr. Yoshihiro Sawada is a clever man: to motivate me in relaunching blog, he sent me... many nose flutes as gift! Thank you very much, Yoshihiro, I love your nose flutes!

Mr. Sawada appeared on the public nose flute scene in 2012, under the name RON, with cute clay « mask » hanabue [please see this post, this one and that one], but he soon began building wooden flutes [see here] and what he has become the most famous for : cardboard templates [see here and here].

Yoshihiro Sawada recently sent me very generously a series of nose flutes representing his current research and home made production.

As far as I know, he invented the « business card hanabue », and sent me two beautiful samples. Those nose flutes are perfectly working, with a soft « papery sound », yet not ergonomically adapted to hard cartilaged noses. They are as great as they are simple, as beautiful as they are easy to build. That's a great invention, we should all have (and distribute!) business nose flutes!

RON has made a specialty of cardboard hanabue templates, that are declined in many shapes and sizes (more details on RON's blog). Yoshihiro sent me also postal card nose flutes, one of them experimenting with an asymmetric positioning of the airway:

I received also very large paper nose flutes, totally covering your face when played. Those large sized hanabue are oftenly used as masks and cut following the shape of an animal head (cat, rabbit, etc.)

Last but not least, Mr. Sawada sent me two great wooden nose flutes! Very simple in they shape too, they have the particularity of being as flat as possible. They are real « pocket nose flutes ».

The first one is a regular single flute, made of two pieces of dark wood. Every feature has been made as simple as it is possible, whilst keeping a ergonomical and playability purpose in the design:

Here is a short sound sample played on this RON flute by the Nosy Diva herself!:

The second one is a light color double nose flute, as simple and flat as the dark one. The purpose of a double flute is to provide two tessituras on one instrument — a sharp section and a bass one — and thus, to offer a global wider ambitus range to the player skilled enough to switch from one airway to the other!

Here are sound samples of each airway, the sharp and the bass, still by our beloved Nosymusic representative:

The sharp channel:

The bass channel:

To conclude and send my most grateful thank to Yoshihiro Sawada, we made a little video with the Diva and the RON's double nose flute: