Welcome to your first lesson on how to play didgeridoo. In this video class you will learn some basic breathing techniques, how to use the different parts of your body required for playing, and some simple practices that you can start working on every day.
Playing didgeridoo requires use of the lips, tongue, cheeks, throat, lungs, diaphragm, abdominal (abs) and intercostal muscles, voice, face muscles and more. Though it looks like playing a simple tube, this practice involves a lot more than what appears on the surface.
Nearly anyone with the patience and discipline to maintain a daily practice will learn how to play didgeridoo effectively and achieve positive results. The key is consistency: 20-30 minutes per day with these exercises will boost your playing rapidly.
In this video we cover:
- Breathing techniques
- How to utilize your throat
- The lip buzz and how to build lip strength
- Hitting the “sweet spot” and getting a great didgeridoo sound
- What to practice when you are just starting
The “sweet spot” is the position of your lips where the drone of the didgeridoo sounds the best. You will know when you are hitting the sweet spot because you will hear a full bass drone in the low register and rich harmonics in the higher register. When you hit the “sweet spot” the air pressure system comes into balance and your breath will last longer. This video covers the best technique for finding and staying on the sweet spot.
Choosing a didgeridoo: The instrument you choose makes a big difference. Most of our clients start on a low-cost plastic didgeridoo, garnering the ability to receive great benefits. Intermediate and advanced players choose wooden instruments for their superior resonance and playability.
Musically speaking the didgeridoo is both a pitched and a percussive instrument. Each didge has a primary tone (known as the fundamental) as well as a series of overtones that can be controlled by the lips, throat and cheeks of the player. The didgeridoo can be played both ambiently and rhythmically, serving as both an atmospheric and a time keeping instrument. The didgeridoo creates low frequencies rich with overtones, making it an ideal tool for meditation.
This is the first out of six lessons from our beginner’s didgeridoo course, The ABCs of Didgeridoo. To find out more about this course and how you can get started working with our teachers, click here.
thanks for your great videons. Would you recommend to position your mouth on the mouthpiece at the center or at one side of the lips? I find it easier to play on the side but many good players and most of the aboriginal players seem to play with the didge at the center. Are there any downsides to playing on the side? Thanks for your help.
Hi JC, I play to the side because I too find it easier to get a good sound. The only time I play on center is when I’m using the trumpet tones (“toots”). Definitely go with what feels natural. Both side and straight playing are legitimate ways to play. -AJ