NIME 2017: Performance with an Electronically Excited Didgeridoo
By Abram Hindle and Daryl Posnett
The didgeridoo is a wind instrument composed of a single large tube often used as drone instrument for backing up the mids and lows of an ensemble. A didgeridoo is played by buzzing the lips and blowing air into the didgeridoo. To play a didgeridoo continously one can employ circular breathing but the volume of air required poses a real challenge to novice players. In this paper we replace the expense of circular breathing and lip buzzing with electronic excitation, thus creating an electro-acoustic didgeridoo or electronic didgeridoo. Thus we describe the didgeridoo excitation signal, how to replicate it, and the hardware necessary to make an electro-acoustic didgeridoo driven by speakers and controllable from a computer. To properly drive the didgeridoo we rely upon 4th-order ported bandpass speaker boxes to help guide our excitation signals into an attached acoustic didgeridoo. The results somewhat replicate human didgeridoo playing, enabling a new kind of mid to low electro-acoustic accompaniment without the need for circular breathing.