20 October 2015

Whistling Addendum

My grandmother.
Seeing the older men and women whistling Turkish and Sylbo in the videos listed in last Friday’s blog post (Speaking in Whistles) reminded me of my grandmother. As I wrote some time ago, that warm, elegant, soft-spoken little woman taught me how to whistle loudly with two fingers (Music Time--The Background).

If you missed last Friday's videos, here’s a sample of my reminders: 

Woman whistling Turkish with one finger, right hand. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQf38Ybo1IY)
Woman whistling Turkish with one finger, left hand. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQf38Ybo1IY)
Woman whistling Sylbo, no fingers. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgEmSb0cKBg)
Woman whistling Sylbo, one finger. OK, she’s young, but this video wasn’t listed in last Friday’s blog post. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=2PyNuOJaDCs)
Nowadays, given the Internet, you don’t need a grandmother to teach you to whistle loudly. As you’d expect, there are a variety of instructional videos. Although my grandmother taught me to use one finger from each hand, I soon advanced to using two fingers from one hand (fingers shaped in an OK sign), as shown here: 

Whistling with two fingers, one hand. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8Oz_ELAjNg)
Like the young woman in this video, I place my fingers atop my tongue. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8Oz_ELAjNg)
I mention placing my fingers on top of my tongue, because I was astonished to see that nearly every video teaches fingers should be placed beneath the tongue, whether using fingers from one or two hands.

This video, like most, places fingers beneath the tongue. Unlike most, the whistler uses two fingers from each hand, which seems a bit much. (www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYpmyE1fliE)
If you’d like to pursue this further, wikiHow is a good starting point (despite the recommended finger-tongue position).

Graphic from Wikihow instructions on whistling. (www.wikihow.com/Whistle-With-Your-Fingers)
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that my brother, like countless others, learned to whistle loudly without the aid of fingers. I didn’t even glance at instructional videos of that technique, but obviously, whistling loudly, hands free, without fingers in one’s mouth has advantages in addition to being more hygienic. If I were starting over, I’d take that route.

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