Answers to Question 14, Do you believe there is a difference between a "didjeridu" and a "yidaki?" and their explanations.

respondents who said yes - skip to those who said no

It's in the spirit!

Just briefly...everything from how it is found, to how it is shaped and cut, the type of timber, the geographical location, the artwork, the interpretation of what is a good sound, cultural foundations, pride as an artist and craftsman/woman, etc.. etc... I believe Yidaki is a noun that should only be used to name instruments from North east Arnhemland that have been made solely by Yolngu people. Didjeridu is a name for everything else that have been made by non-Yolngu, even if the look or sound is very similar.

No as it is linguistic connection and is it a yidaki or one of the many other traditional names. Or are they all just a hollow piece of wood etc. that has special properties.???
So is a didgeridoo, didjeridoo a didge or is it a yidaki or one of the miriade other names for the same thing. To the traditional owners of the instrument there is a difference even between the clans and areas. so Yes

didj: anything goes as far as who made it, size, shape, sound. Yidaki: make in the Top End by Yolngu, skinny, slightly conical, muffled and resonant, toots easily, Associated with the specific people who made it. It's their property.

But also no. It's just names, where a Yidaki is IMHO more specified in dimensions, material, playing style. Yidaki refers in my perception mainly to sticks from around Yirrkala

I use yidaki to denote instruments made in the (more or less) traditional way by Aboriginal people in it's traditional range. I use dijeridu for all other instruments.

Yidaki is the one from Arnhemland.

yidaki seems to be thick walled, heavy and conical in shape. didgeridoos seem more straight and thinner walled. they're more adept at playing western style ane ambient like.

yes and no, those are words from differnt languages to describe a hollow tubular wind instrument, played with specific breathing and shaping the timbre by the resonance of the thoat/mouth tongue. No, when the word yi_daki is interpreted as an instrument that comes from the region/language area where the instrument is called yi_daki originally, having certain regional characteristics, like usually made out of termite hollowed stringybark trees, and having a slightly conical bore.

Its the difference in who made it and where it was made. Art and shape not withstanding (so much)

For me didjeridu is a generic word which refers to an instrument consisting of a tube of some material, made by australian Aboriginal people, or inspired by such instruments.
Even in australia there are many different Aboriginal words depending on clan, group, language, to describe this instrument.
Yirdaki is the instrument of the Yolngu who come from North-West Arnhem Land. In addition to having it's origin directly in the stories of their ancestors, the instrument (with some variations between moiety) has a particular sound which is preferred in that region for the traditional music. The material is predominantly termite hollowed eucalyptus, though I am not 100% sure that other materials like Pandanus or Bamboo are not used.

Yidaki can ONLY come from NE Arnhemland and actually have a spirit voice

I'd like to think that Yidaki is Aboriginal made, in their tradition, even if more modern tools are used.... made to play in the traditional style and sound that way.... I would call Djalu' instruments Yidaki, but maybe a little more "hybrid" with the bigger bells and taper.

In my talking I use two yidaki to describe the instrument within tradition... I can only play yidaki at a little baby's level... I know how it sounds and maybe to reproduce a little but what I make is just Balanda Airplain sounds...

I understand Yidaki to be a subclass or type of didjeridu that is specific to the Yolgnu people of NE Arnhem Land. It has a characteristic approximately conical bore which causes the overtones or toot notes to have frequencies which are approxiamtely double (octave), triple, quadruple, etc. of the fundamental or drone. This is in sharp contrast to mostly cylindrical bores such as are common in tourist instruments where the overtone sequence goes Drone, 3xDrone, 5xDrone, etc. As I feebly understand the Yolngu playhing techniques, the first toot being only an octave away from the drone facilitates it frequent use. Much beyond that I know very little about the traditional playing style, except that the Yolngu players that I have heard do not emphasize timbral changes as much as western players.

It's like sparkling wine and Champagne, all yidiki are didjeridus, not all didjeridus are yidiki.

"Didjeridu" in my view is ANY instrument crafted by a non-Aboriginal whether it is a termited bored Eucalypt or split European log or plastic sliding section pipe.
"Yidaki" is a term I apply ONLY and specifically to an instrument crafted by Yolngu of ArnhemLand from these selected Eucalypts -StringyBark,BloodWood,Woolly Butt,IronWood and River Gum and within the specific design of a very narrow mouthpiece(Aussie "20 cents" diameter maximum!!)and equivalent bore in the neck of the instrument for the first 12 inches leading to a flare in the latter part of the log.Regional variations apply of course.
Acoustically, a "Yirdaki" I consider to be dynamically differing from didjeridus, with a higher back pressure and "raspier" sound quality and with a tonal response only fully revealed by playing with a more controlled frontal embouchure and minimal buccal cavity in the mouth.

Yidaki - made by aboriginal australians, and arising from their traditions
Didjeridu - made by the rest of folks worldwide

My understanding is yidaki is one of didjeridu. We should call the traditional name if it was made by tranditional maker.

To me, a yidaki is entirely made by Australian Aborinals, of eucalyptus or even bamboo. Anything else is a didjeridu.

Report to I agree with every point of view stated there... But there is an obvious difference, the most important I know beeing that the Yidaki is a didjeridu used/made by Yolngu among other characteristics.

not sure on the philosophical but i believe this could be said to be true?: "all yidakis are didjeridus but not all didjeridus are yidakis." from my understanding, yidakis are from a certain region only using one type of eucalyptus, they tend to be very "traditional" in shape and color, usually simply painted with the ochres, not much in the way of "artistic" embellishment. i'd say this compares with didjeridus which is a broader term for the instrument, ie: it could be bamboo from china, or pvc from Home Depot, didj's could be made from many different materials, agave/yucca, maleluka and other eucs, glass, metal, cardboard, anything you can get a vibration on. i would say yidakis have a more spiritual connection with the aboriginal culture.

Arnhem Land, using traditional materials and techniques V.S. not from Arnhem Land using different types of materials not really floowing traditional techniques

I believe from past readings that the yidaki is strictly used for religious/cultural ceremonies, not performed or displayed for non-aboriginal persons.

from my perspective, a yirdaki is a traditional instrument, made in a traditional manner, from traditional materials by it's traditional owner. A didjeridu is a non-traditional instrument made by anyone from anything that can be played in a manner similar to a yirdaki.

Didgeridu is any tube played with sounds like a yidaki. Yidaki is a traditional instrument made in the traditional way by an aboriginal person.

Explain briefly? yeah right ... "Yidaki" are crafted/painted, from termite hollowed eucalyptus trees, by a Indiginus Resident of Arnhem Land. All others are "Didjeridu"

Yidaki is made in the traditional style. Narrow with a slight tapper.

I guess there are several different styles of instruments. Like several different styles of guitars. Each one has its strong points and its weak points.

didj - general instrument
yidaki - specific style from NE Arnhem Land region(s), one of many types / style of didj

Don't know much about it but, i believe the Yidaki is longer and thinner, resulting in a different sound. I think it's from moree northern regions.

I am not an expert on this, but I think the difference is in the style of the instrument, and in playing style. To be honest, I don't feel that I understand these differences, though.

didjeridu is what I play, an aboriginal instrument with western play style. An aboriganal plays Yidaki, Gindjunggang etc

didgeridoo can be anything...from PVC to eucalyptus...
Yidaki is really eucalyptus

I think "didjeridu" can be any hallow device with which one can made didjeridu sounds. Yidaki is made by the people who traditionally call it yidaki. All yidakis are didjeridus, but not all didjeridus are yidakis.

Didgeridu is a instrument the way we (white foolks) play it. Yidaki is the instrument de aboriginals use for their ceremonys

Yirdaki, NE Arnhemland traditional instrument, made from native trees, made in traditional/modern methods. Sound attributes differ, as well as playing technique for Yirdaki vs. Didj.

I prefer to only use the word yidaki to refer to an instrument from n.e.arnhemland crafted by an Aboriginal crafter. This definition puts crafters like Frank Thill in a tight spot because when his instruments are finished by all rights they are in fact yirdaki yet the titles definition has me saying that really he makes didjeridu. Yirdaki denotes cultural authenticity.

yidaki is aboriginal made from traditional material and in traditional styles, didjeridu can be made from anything by anyone.

Yirdaki: specifically from NEAL, usually stringy bark, conical rough bore, rougher less harmonic sound, for a purpose to accompany song man/sticks, rhythms to relate to various elements of the spirits of the place and the dreamtime, stock of ceremonial law and rhythms relatd to it.
Didge: cleaner bore, various forms/woods/materials, more harmonic, used more in a solo way with an emphasis on the musicality rather than rhythm of things.

I feel that the term 'didjeridu' has come to mean any instrument comprised of a tube that can be played using circular breathing. I consider Yidaki to be instruments from N.E.A.L. created with relatively high backpressure and the ability to easily produce the blown overtone, or toot, utilized in the traditional playing techniques of the region.

I'll say 'yes' for the moment. A few weeks ago, I'd have simply said 'no' and claimed that Yidaki was simply the original name for what has become known as didgeridoo.
Now, I guess that I would consider a true 'yidaki' to come from NEAL and be made by Aboriginal people.
If I ever meet Djalu and he points at my 'tourist candy' didge and he refers to it as 'Yidaki', then maybe I'd change my use of terminology once more.

Its difficult getting the right trad sound out of a didgeridoo because they dont give the right feedback information when your playing.A Yirdaki irrelevant of where its made or what its made from will play ,sound right and give the correct feedback information when playing Traditional style.

There are some good articles on this that discusses the issues quite well I think.

Everything that look like a pipe could be call a Didjeridu.
For me a Yidaki is an instrument make by an Aboriginal person from Arhnem Land, and each Yidaki have got a different reason to exist, the sound and the painting must be adapted to a special "ceremonies".
The sound a Yidaki is very typical, easy toots seems compulsary in my idea.

Yidaki has a warm sound ,but a lot of the didgeridoos I've played all sound the same and the mouthpieces are quite large with a ton of wax.

Didgeridu is Western
Yidaki is the original

yidaki is especially created for aboriginal ceremonials

a yidaki is a ceremonial instrument collected, shaped and painted by Aboriginal People from Arnhem Land.

A yidaki is made by indiginous people and in traditional ways. Decoration according to the area and clan and made for a particular sound and style of play.
A didjeridoo can made from a multitude of materials and for lots of different styles of play

For me Yidaki is made my an Aboriginal master didjmaker, and a didgeridoo is made by non-Aboriginal didjmaker

a didjeridu can be made out of any material anywhere in the world, a yidaki is out of eucalyptus made by aborigenees

A "diddjeridu" is a hollow tube that can be played by buzzing your lips into it. A "yirdaki" is, a conical shaped insturment from the top end of Australia, specifically Arnhemland, made by traditonal people.

I believe the Yidaki to represent the original euc instruments that are crafted and painted by aboriginal people from the top end. A didjeridoo is everything else regardless of origin.

For me yidaki is associated with the traditional roots and spirituals aspects, and didjeridu with the turisty commercial abuse of the instrument.

Yirdaki is music for aboriginals mans with their rules, Balandas can't plays Yirdaki. Didgeridoo is only music

I reserve the term "Yidaki" to an instrument wich had been made in an aboriginal community, for a goal wich is not only a merchant one,an instrument in wich the maker put his knowledge of the usage of it.
To what i've heard, Yidaki have generaly less high pitch harmonics than carved didgeridoos,a more "sober" sound.

Yidaki seems to be more closely "original and real". More for religious / storytelling than for entertainment.

Particularly the shape and the sound.

Yidaki : only made by indigious people, NE Arnhem Land; special narrow mouthpeace (other sound than didjeridu) and shape of the yidaki body. It is made in relation with nature!! (use of original trees, original knowledge that stands for ages....).

Yirdaki is traditional style stick used by the Yolngu people from NE Arnhem Land, Euc & aboriginal made and used in ceremony, size and shape don't really matter but they tend to be straighter with a smaller bell and painted up with traditional tribal art. Didjeridu is the wider name used for a hollow end blown log, plastic pipe etc, a UK made split wood didje could never be a yirdaki, its a didjeridu.

There is plenty out there on the net regarding these differences.
A didj tends to be long and parallel and plays in the western style with fine tounge glides. Yirdaki, made by a recognised individual from NE Arnhem Land, has the deep graverly rustic sound, probably of higher pitch than a Didge, toots more easily, and allows for better rythmic playing as a support instrument than the western vertuoso approach.
The Yirdaki sound is far more complex than the western Didge drone.

For me its just a matter of definition: A yidaki for me is reduced to instruments made by traditional makers of the NEA region. (CI4, to use Guans classification. But I did so before he came up with it).

for me, didgeridoo is the world created by white people to describe yidaki. with this etimologic difference, yidaki is an aboriginal instrument for ceremony and a didgeridoo is a sort of "yidaki" to play musics, rythms without ceremony like i do. But i think every didgeridoo player feel the link with the original dreamtime, the strong link with the land,the life and each person connect with his roots and his dreamtime.

In its simplest form, Didgeridu is all other styles than Trad or NEAL sound

Yirdaki has higher back presssure, a dirty dry sound (beautiful), a slight conical shape and as regards to key's and length: it is divided between Yirritja and Dhuwa moitey.

My understanding is that Yidaki comes only from N.E. Arnhemland where it has been harvested,prepared and finished by Yolngu craftsmen.I also believe that not enough credence is given to Mago which still falls within traditional areas of the top end but is played in a style distinctly different to that of N.E.Arnhemland. The Mago in my view must also be collected and prepared by craftsmen belonging to area where the Mago is traditional.
My view is that didgeridoo is any other instrument constructed elsewhere be it constructed by Aboriginal or non Aboriginal persons-hopefully the former.

Yidaki > long, small, N-Arnhem sound with "snarr"

A Yidaki is a more traditional didjeridu, orginating from NE Arnhemland, made without the use of powertools & meant to be played w/out beeswax.

Yidaki to me means an instrument crafted by Yolngu people for specific use within the frame of reference of their own culture.

I feel yidaki is crafted out of wood from the native geographical area and by aborignal people. didgeridoo is a western word and are crafted out of more contemporary materials and methods by non aboriginal people.

To me, a yidaki is an instrument from the top end of Australia (generally Arnhem Land but not always), with a conical shape (no big bells) made from Stringybark Euclypt (sometimes Woolybutt) decorated with traditional bands and/or raark designs and painted with traditional colours (red, white, black, yellow - sometimes green and pinkish colour)

For me yidaki is link on the spiritual level to yolgnu people
The difference between y, and d. is a moving one. Last Garma I listen to Jeremy statement about yidaki "" A yidaki is made by a yolgnu "" Fear enough and I agree in the balanda perspective. But once Garma finished and I was here camping with the familly my mallee didge was the only instrument around and often the kid and boy will borrow it for practice they will never refer to it as a didge but a yidaki so for those moment my didge become a yirdaki... For me it is still a didge but when I refer to it to yolgnu people I often call it yirdaki... Hope this make sens !!!

"DIDGE" I think is the western word for Yidaki...however..arent most yidakis made and very much all in simliar shapes and styles albeit depending on who made them, certainly didges come in all shapes sizes etc like bells big bells doubles etc...i really am not sure regarding the origin of these types but i doubt i would see Djalu play a double wopper??

I think of yidaki as traditional Aboriginal and didgeridoo more popular

respondents who said no

Yes and no. To the best of my knowledge. Yirdaki is a term used by yolngu to describe an entire family of hollow-log drone instruments that have different characteristics and are used for different occasions by different groups of people. In this way the term is not very different from the Euro-Australian word didjeridu, which similarly lumps together all hollow-log drone aerophones. I am aware, however that currently the term Yirdaki is being used to ascribe a degree of cultural authenticity to an instrument of Yolngu make. I think this is a fine practice, as it helps inform consumers about the culture that invented the instrument, and hopefully helps to funnel some money back to Yolngu. But, as far as a practical difference between the words yirdaki and didjeridu, I would say not much.

Surely I'm aware that a yidaki/didgeridoo is made differently globally. There are different sizes, shapes, thicknesses, bees wax, no bees wax, plastic, glass, split-made, etc. However, for me the noun Yidaki is how I refer to them. It's just like the sport of Soccer. I dislike calling this sport Soccer, because that's not how I grew up knowing/calling it. I grew up calling it "Futbol". However, to set context, I have to call it soccer when in Rome ;-) ... Getting back to the didgeridoo, most non-aboriginals call this enchanting instrument a "Didgeridoo" and I have to use it for the appropriate context. I however, do mention "Yidaki" first, and then associate it with the Didgeridoo so that I can make change in awareness in the listeners' minds.

I thought it ment the same

I don't know the difference.

I think that 'yidaki' is the Yolgnu word, where as didjeridu is the name the british gave it when they heard it. IIRC, there's another word for an instrument which is similar to the yidaki but larger and longer and only used in secret ceremonies.

What is a yidaki

Same instrument but yidaki used for traditional rythms and didgeridoo the more resonant faster playing. I believe didgeridoo has come to mean "westernised Yidaki"

the didjeridu as far as I was aware was just the white mans name for the yidaki, and they are one and the same thing.

Having said "no", I confess I don't really know. I know they are different terms. "Didjeridu" is a non-indigenous, onamatopaic term and "yidaki" is an indigenous term. Whether the Yolngu draw any distinction between the terms, I have no idea.

I believe that the instrument is known by different names in different parts of Australia