The Great Udini: Renato Martins

Brazillian percussionist Renato Martins plays the udini, a smaller version of the udu, sometimes known as “water udus” (see the vid below to find out why “water” is in the title).

Losing Your Marbles: Wintergatan’s Wondrous Musical Machine

I don’t have the words to describe how wondrous I found this, but I’ll just show you the sequence of videos and see if you agree. This is a real device, made by the musician, who I believe to be Martin “MacGuyver” Molin, but am still checking on that one. The set of skills he has in the woodshop is amazing all by itself. See the “making of” videos below for more on that.

Finding Flow in Practice: Glenn Gould

There’s a lot to like about the video of pianist Glenn Gould below. Three things happen in the video that show Gould’s flow state in practice (see clips below).

Wynton Marsalis: 12 Rules of Practice

Wynton Marsalis knows how to practice. As a younger man, he was equally at home in front of a symphony orchestra playing the Haydn concerto, or laying down some serious jazz with Art Blakey. Check out his 12 Rules of Practice after the video.

Boost Your Skills: Adopt a New Instrument. Maybe This Trippy Yaybahar?

Adopting a new instrument can push your musical awareness of pitch, rhythm, timbre, melody, and harmony to new and useful places. A new and unfamiliar instrument can also add a spark to your practice if you’re bored with the same-old same-old. Here’s a fascinating new acoustic instrument, the Yaybahar, made and played by Görkem Şen. What a great sound!

The Flying Fingers of Jeremy Ellis

Looking to hone your rhythmic ability? Gadgets can be a fun way to do it. Here’s Jeremy Ellis demonstrating insane amounts of practice with his finger wizardry on the Maschine Mikro and below that, on its bigger brother, the Maschine Studio. Pretty mad skills!

This Might Melt Your Brain: Anna-Maria Hefele Sings 2 Notes At Once

The overtone series is the sonic example of the Golden Ratio, and it underlies all music (and all sound, really), no matter where the music comes from. Brass players are intimately familiar with the overtone series (also known as the harmonic series), even if they don’t know what it’s called. Produce sound through any tube (like didgeridoo, shofar, flute, bugle, trumpet, garden hose, etc.) while keeping the length of the tube the same (i.e. don’t push keys or valves), and you’ll hear the overtone series. With practice, you can do it with your voice, too, as demonstrated by singer Anna-Maria Hefele in the video below. After her demonstration, there’s a couple more video of what overtone singing sounds like in a piece of music.