Every once in a while I have breathing issues. That case of pneumonia early last year didn’t do my asthma any favors. My recent new year health scare reminded me I need to work on my lungs. My daughter was recently in Peru and she brought back two native wind instruments for me — a wooden flute and a set of panpipes. The finger holes on the flute give me trouble, but I’m doing ok on the panpipes. I love Andean pipe music so I play along with my various CDs.
Wind instruments are old. Millennia ago someone picked up a reed, animal horn, or a hollow bone and blew through it. With a few adjustments that simple tube concept became all the wind instruments created since. Some wind instruments disappeared over time. Others spread around the world. Some stayed relatively simple while others became elaborate things. All of them make unique sounds. Early on, musicians figured out different sounds could be made by adding holes. Someone noticed even more sounds could be made by adding reed slivers to narrow the mouthpiece, a gourd to amplify the sound, or a membrane to vibrate against the breath.
Did you ever try to make music with tissue over a comb?
I’m a drummer. My main musical talent is working out drumbeats and creating rhythm on synthetic and hide drums. Everyone knows drums are percussion instruments, but few realize they are also considered membranophones. Not a glamorous-sounding name is it? A membranophone is any musical instrument that produces sound with a vibrating stretched membrane. On a drum that would be the drum head. Membranophones come in more forms besides the drum. It also includes wind instruments like onion flutes, eunuch flutes (yes you read that right) and mirlitons (not the chayote). A mirliton is a kazoo. Yes, a kazoo was once a serious instrument. And today is…
I often wonder where certain words and sayings come from. For the next few weeks this word collector will be examining some familiar phrases to get at their heart. I think you’ll be surprised.
The phrase for today is ~ Face the music.
Everyone knows this phrase has to do with accepting the unpleasant results of one’s actions, but opinions are divided on just where this phrase comes from. One opinion has to do with actors being on stage and facing the orchestra pit. That sounds pretty weak to me. If this were so, how does the current meaning fit? The other opinion is this phrase refers to a military reprimand or court martial . A drum head would be used as an improvised writing table for a court martial or formal reprimand held in the field. You’d face the drum to hear your sentence, and the slang meaning becomes obvious. Makes sense to me.
Today our guest is Author Jane Leopold Quinn
Romance Books ‘4’ Us ~ Our February contest is coming up. http://www.romancebooks4us.com
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