Culture Scope: Didgeridoo

The Didgeridoo (sometimes spelled didjeridu) is a wooden instrument produced by the indigenous tribes within Australia. Nobody knows the true age of the instrument as only cave or rock paintings (estimated to have existed 1000 to 1500 years in the past) are the only pieces of evidence available.
These instruments are crafted from hardwood timber, such as the several eucalyptus tree species which are exclusive to the region. Aboriginal craftsmen would scour the land for trees hollowed by termite activity. Termites only craft their nests within the heart of the tree, careful to avoid the living wood on the outside which contains bug-repelling chemicals.
The craftsmen peel the bark and tap on the wood, looking for the perfect vibrations to make a proper instrument. Once the hollow tree is chopped out, has the bark cleaned off, has its ends cut off and is then shaped and then decorated if the craftsman wishes it. A rim of beeswax is placed on the mouthpiece, creating an effective seal for proper blowing. And so, that’s how one of the most recognizable Australian Aborigine instrument is created.

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