With Christmas on the horizon, learn how to play the Feadog whistle, master new tunes each week and be guided along from our Tin Whistle Tutor Book and accompanying CD.
We will first start off with holding the whistle correctly, followed by learning how to finger the notes correctly and finally breathing techniques when playing the Feadog whistle.
- Holding the whistle correctly.
Place the Feadog whistle between your lips and put the whistle at a 45-degree angle when placed in your mouth. Place your dominant hand at the bottom and your other hand at the top of the barrel. Do not use your small finger unless you are supporting the whistle while playing certain notes. Use your thumb to hold up the whistle from below. Cover the six keyholes with your fingertips. Place the tip of the mouthpiece (fipple) between your lips (but not between your teeth)!
- Learning how to finger the notes correctly.
The standard range of the whistle is two octaves. (On the Feadog can play 3). For a D whistle, this includes notes from the second D above middle C to the fourth D above middle C. As you go up a note on a whistle, you generally lift one finger. White holes specify the hole is uncovered, black indicates the hole is covered.
- Breathing technique when playing the Feadog Whistle.
When learning any wind instrument, it is important to learn how to take a new breath without losing your timing. Take a quick, deep breath, and be careful not to lose your timing when you breathe. Counting as you play should help you become more confident with this and slowly progress with the Feadog whistle after time spent learning this technique on your Feadog whistle.
By Nathan Crampton