Tonettes, Song Flutes & Flutophones…Part 2

Rivals of the Tonette in the "pre-band" instrument world were Song Flutes by Fitchhorn (later Conn) and Flutophones.  I'll also include an ocarina by Waterbury in this section.
The Song Flute is very similar to the Tonette.  There always seems to be some debate if the Song Flute is an ocarina or not.  I say it is an ocarina.  Unlike the Tonette, the Song Flute has a small opening in the "bell".  But if you were to close that hole while playing, you still get a tone.  So in essence, that hole acts like a tuning hole found on some clay ocarinas.  If it were an open pipe, like a Flutophone, when you close off the end, you would get no sound.  
Song Flutes were first produced (and developed) by Fitchhorn.  At a later point in time, Conn bought out Fitchhorn.  So you will find both examples with both names on them.  Like Tonettes, the Song Flute came primarily in black.  They were also made in much smaller numbers in white and red.  Song Flutes from Conn can still be purchased, but the quality isn't very good.
Fitchhorn Song Flute with Original Box
Fitchhorn (top) and Conn (bottom)
Fun with a Song Flute, copyright 1944
Another popular pre-band instrument used in school systems was the Flutephone by Trophy.  Again, similar looking to the Tonette (and Song Flute) but with an open end like a recorder.  I would categorize this as an actual flute.  When the end is closed, there is no sound.  Unlike the Tonette and Song Flute, black was the scarcer color.  The primary color scheme for the Flutophone was white with red accents.  Flutophones are still being produced, but again, the quality is not very good.
Flutophone with Original Box
Flutophones in the Two Color Schemes
I'm including a ocarina by Waterbury because it's the same vintage and would have been marketed to the same person.  It's a heavy plastic ocarina of varying quality.  They came in two styles, and you could choose the key of C or the ever popular key of E.  
Ocarina by Waterbury with Original Box
More tonette, song flute, flutophone posts to come......

Recital Videos

I've edited the video from my recent woodwind recital into individual piece videos and uploaded them as a playlist on YouTube.  The live stream video is still available as well.  There are seven videos in the playlist.  The preview below shows the first piece on the program (and playlist).

Recital Time

It's been quite a few years since I've done a recital.  This past spring I made the commitment to put together a recital for the end of summer.  It was originally schedule August 13th, but I got the dreaded Covid 4 days before.  Now the rescheduled date of October 8th is fast approaching.  This is going to be a woodwind multi-instrument program.  It's my first time doing an "official" non-clarinet only recital.
I figured if I was going to do a doubling recital, I may as well do it right.  There are pieces with the traditional woodwind family members....clarinet, flute and sax.  But there are also a few pieces for instruments not normally seen in a recital setting.  19 instruments in total.  It will hopefully be livestreamed and recorded.  
  • Sonatina by Darren Lord
  • The Cycle of Life (O Ciclo da Vida) by Ricardo Matosinhos

  • Geordi Tunes by Peter Hope
    • Future Echoes from the Ancient Voices of Turtle Island by William Moylan
    • Rainmaker by Philip Parker
    • Grande Fantasie de Concert “L’ Eco” by A.N. Mezzetti
    • Five Dances for Five Clarinets by Alfred Reed