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Earliest music instruments found - Comments

Planetary Paul's Avatar Comment 1 by Planetary Paul

Comment Removed by Author

Sat, 26 May 2012 21:21:33 UTC | #943698

Planetary Paul's Avatar Comment 2 by Planetary Paul

Can these flutes still be played?

Sat, 26 May 2012 21:22:52 UTC | #943699

Sample's Avatar Comment 3 by Sample

"Geissenkloesterle is one of several caves in the region that has produced important examples of personal ornaments, figurative art, mythical imagery and musical instruments."

Or hunting tools as these instruments may very well be.


Sat, 26 May 2012 21:23:36 UTC | #943700

jbkaffe's Avatar Comment 4 by jbkaffe

I always thought a-minor was the deadliest chord. But these flutes have potential.

They should try to make some replicas and measure the sound waves. Just for the hell of it.

Sat, 26 May 2012 21:38:34 UTC | #943703

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 5 by Alan4discussion

I still reckon the birds invented music first! - Another South American family that "deliberately" creates wing noises is the Pipridae or manakins. These tiny, brightly-hued birds indulge in communal displays which for sheer extravagance of colour, movement and sound may be compared only to the birds of paradise in the Old World tropics of New Guinea. Male manakins of many of the 56 species make spectacular sounds with their specially shaped feathers. In the case of the club-winged manakin AIlacotopterus deliciosus of Colombia and Ecuador, three of the male's secondary wing feathers are a quite different shape from the three equivalent feathers of a female's wings.

Some using wing feathers - evolved as musical instruments - for impressing females .

Secondary feathers of Club-winged Manakin Allocotopterus deliciosus. The three on the left, from the wing of a male, are adapted for sound production; the three on the right are the corresponding female feathers. ( See illustration on the above link!) - November 11, 2009—Male club-winged manakins vibrate their wings to create violin-like sounds to impress females, a new study says. - A new study from Cornell University claims to have identified the first bird species that creates singing sounds with the feathers of their wings. 2 minute video.

Sat, 26 May 2012 22:46:26 UTC | #943718

mordacious1's Avatar Comment 6 by mordacious1

Music could have played a role in the maintenance of larger social networks, which may have helped our species expand their territory at the expense of the more conservative Neanderthals.

Neanderthal: "This 'Heavy Bone' music is just noise and it hurts my ears. It will never replace Rock n' Roll", (rolls two rocks down a hill) "Now that's music!"

Sat, 26 May 2012 22:53:52 UTC | #943720

Zeuglodon's Avatar Comment 7 by Zeuglodon

Imagine what our ancestors must have used them for, while they were also making their cave paintings and laying their ceremonial funeral rites all those millennia ago. I can imagine them huddled around a fire between huts made from mammoth tusks and hides, listening to an elder as he blows a lonely tune out over the summer grasslands. The idea of music being so ancient - older than agriculture and cities - makes me shudder with awe. What a wonderful relief such an experience must have been for a harsh hunter-gatherer way of life.

Sat, 26 May 2012 22:55:21 UTC | #943721

bluebird's Avatar Comment 8 by bluebird

'Sound from a reconstruction of a 35,000 year-old flute made from Vulture wing bone:

link text

From little acorns grow mighty oaks - to wit- from this simple flute and pleasant melody to Mozart's Flute Concertos; love it.

Sat, 26 May 2012 23:11:52 UTC | #943724

drumdaddy's Avatar Comment 9 by drumdaddy

As a percussionist it would be my guess that the first musical instruments involved the beautiful natural wood tones of branch on branch. Unfortunately, these would lack telltale signs of musical use such as the wind holes found on the flutes and therefor would be unrecognizable as instruments.

Sun, 27 May 2012 03:38:18 UTC | #943756

All About Meme's Avatar Comment 10 by All About Meme

Comment 9 by Drumdaddy

That was my first reaction to this article: primitive percussion instruments must have preceded flutes!

Wood on wood? Perhaps.

It could also have been femur rapping on skull, but I shan't raise this bone of contention here.

Sun, 27 May 2012 06:38:51 UTC | #943779

debonnesnouvelles's Avatar Comment 11 by debonnesnouvelles

Comment 2 by Planetary Paul :

Can these flutes still be played?

Most likely they could still be played, but I can't imagine that that'll happen. You can't rule out that the blowing of the ancient bones is not going to affect their structure, so I am sure they won't risk it. My flute colleague in Berlin has some "old bones" that he sometimes produces and plays for us. The older the embouchure, the trickier it is to produce stable notes, it seems.

Sun, 27 May 2012 07:28:02 UTC | #943784