In this Arroyo Willow (Salix lasiolepis) unsplit branch flute, most of the bark has been left on, sanded down somewhat on the top to decrease the thickness at the top three tone holes. Measuring 22 1/2" in length, it is accurately tuned to a clear and soulful F pentatonic scale, playing three upper octave notes. A few diamonding fissures have been inlaid with crushed malachite. Deer lacing with malachite and brass beads holds the bird to the nest. To help prevent wet-out, the bird has been fitted with a redwood shoe, and a drain hole, covered by the lacing, has been designed into the bottom of the air chamber. The branch for this flute was gathered sustainably, with respect and gratitude, along San Marcos Creek, in San Diego County, CA, amongst a wild grove of Arroyo Willow trees. California Indians found many uses for the wonderful willow tree, including bows, baskets, shelters, clothing, fish traps and medicines derived from salicin in the willow's bark, the original aspirin.
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