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Rhythm: Do, De, Do, Da.

Do De Do Da

A simple didgeridoo rhythm, easy to play, with four beats, can be slowed down or speeded up, added to and generally improvised. There are two opportunities to breathe with this didge rhythm, on every other beat, which assists new players and players learning to circular breathe.

Each beat starts with a 'D'. Think of a baby learning to say da-da, the 'D' is pronounced with the tongue being at the front of the mouth, then the tongue and mouth move to pronounce the vowel that follows it.

Practice saying the didge rhythm a number of times first to get the flow of it (at a pace that feels comfortable). Try also to accentuate the movement from consonant to vowel (without playing) and note how your cheeks move, jaw moves e.g. when saying Da the jaw will drop. When playing the rhythm these movements will not be as obvious but will create a clearer and more constant sound.

For the purposes of this rhythm, 'Du' and 'Do' are almost identical so use whatever feels or sounds best to you.

After sounding the vowel, the tongue needs to return to make the next 'D' on the next beat. Try to keep all movements smooth.

Start slow and build up speed, play at what is a comfortable speed for you then start to lay around with the rhythm.

The examples were recorded using two didges to give an impression of a higher and lower pitch. The first a Yew didge somewhere between E and F, the second a generic bloodwood eucalyptus didgeridoo pitched roughly at D.

Starting with an improvisation to give an idea of the didgeridoo rhythm, followed with examples of the basic rhythm at different speeds (for these I have written the bpm ((beats per minute)). These are recorded using the Yew didge. Also, there are some examples of the rhythm on the bloodwood didge, followed by an improvisation on the bloodwood.

I have then provided some of my own variations:

  • Do, De, Do, Dup - the last beat - Da - is replaced by an overtone or toot. Breathing occurs once in the rhythm, on the first Do.
  • Do, Dee, Do, Daa - the second and fourth (consonant) notes are extended and the first and third notes (breathing notes) are made slightly shorter.
  • Do-o, De-e, Do-o, Da-a - pushing the diaphragm up on the first and third notes and using the throat to pulse an extra note on all four notes.
  • Dugga-Do, Dugga-De, Dugga-Do, Dugga-Da - extending the rhythm by adding other sounds, in these examples, the word 'Dugga' is used. Recorded in four tempos.

The last track is another improvisation.

Do-De-Do-Da Rhythm Tempo Samples

Do-De-Do-Da Slow  Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da Slow  Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 80bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 80bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 100bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 100bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 120bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 120bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 140bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 140bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 160bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 160bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 180bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 180bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 200bpm Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 200bpm Hi-Fi Hi-fi
140bpm (Double)
Do-De-Do-Da 140bpm (Double) Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da 140bpm (Double) Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-De-Do-Da Fastest Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Da Fastest Hi-Fi Hi-fi

Bloodwood MP3 Rhythm Samples

Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Slow Lo-Fi Low-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Slow Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Medium Lo-Fi Low-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Medium Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Fast Lo-Fi Low-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Fast Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Very Fast
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Very Fast Lo-Fi Low-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Very Fast Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Improvisation Lo-Fi Low-fi
Bloodwood Do-De-Do-Da Improvisation Hi-Fi Hi-fi

Do-De-Do-Da Variations

Do-De-Do-Dup Sample 1 Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-De-Do-Dup Sample 1 Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Dodee, Dodaa Sample 1 Lo-Fi Low-fi
Dodee, Dodaa Sample 1 Hi-Fi Hi-fi
Do-o, De-e, Do-o, Da-a
Do-o, De-e, Do-o, Da-a Sample 1 Lo-Fi Low-fi
Do-o, De-e, Do-o, Da-a Sample 1 Hi-Fi Hi-fi

Dugga-Do, Dugga-De, Dugga-Do, Dugga-Da Rhythm Tempo Samples

Dugga-do,Dugga-de,Dugga-do,Dugga-da Improvisation Lo-Fi Low-fi
Dugga-do,Dugga-de,Dugga-do,Dugga-da Improvisation Hi-Fi Hi-fi

Good luck with your didge playing.

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