Skip to content
Tellefs Blog

Home: Tellef Kvifte's blog

A blog on Norwegian and Nordic traditional music, its music theory, and related topics, from a musician and scholar
This is my blog - a collection of post about music, releases, and more or less scholarly papers
The blog posts are reflections on music (mainly folk, traditional and jazz), music theory and the music industry, from the perspectives of an academic, a musician, and a label founder.
You will also find a list of most of the album releases where I have taken part in one or more role
Also, a list of a few of the articles/books - more or less academic in style - I have published during four decades. For the moment, I have chosen a few that are somehow connected to topics in the blog posts.

Most recent post:

Glissotar - a new instrument with new challenges and possibilities

The other day, the Glissotar arrived at my door - a completely new instrument with many possibilities and challenges! It is a wind instrument of the same size, bore and mouthpiece of a soprano saxophone, but with any keys - the pitch is controlled by pressing a rubber strip down on a slot that goes almost the full length of he instrument. Have a look at for a fuller description!
One of the challenges is of course how to find the pitches you want. The generic woodwind instrument of a tin whistle has just six finger holes, that give you a major scale. Very many woodwind instruments have this model as a point of departure, and may offer a full chromatic scale by means of extra keywork.
The challenge with the Glissotar is that it does not have a diatonic model as the base - you have to somehow think chromatically. Placing the hands naturally over the ribbon, and lifting finger by finger, it s easy to get half steps for each finger. An additional challenge is that you have to move your hands to different positions along the instrument to cover pitches throughout the range of the instrument.
On the other hand: the Glissotar opens up for a lot of new effects and sounds, some that are quite easy to produce already wth little experience with the instrument; others more difficult.
But what I find most interesting with the Glissotar at he moment, is what kind of mental model I have to develope to control pitches. I probably have to try not to draw too much on my experience with other woodwinds, the continuous user interface is more similar to a trombone that to a sax or tin whistle; the position shifting more like playing with positions on a violin.
It will be interesting to see in what directions this will lead musically!

Want to print your doc?
This is not the way.
Try clicking the ⋯ next to your doc name or using a keyboard shortcut (
) instead.