Buying A Didgeridoo
First, please indulge a quick yet informative rant
Buying a didgeridoo should be fun, but one visit to the didgeridoo pages on eBay, for example, can make your head spin. There are endless choices, bad photos, and very misleading descriptions. Also, many didgeridoos found on the internet are made with cheap labor in China, India or Indonesia, where manufacturing labor laws and ecological damage corrupt the very heart of what playing the didgeridoo is all about. Even on many Australian sites the didgeridoos are not made or painted by Aboriginal artists. L.A.Outback is different. We hope that our ethics and standards of quality appeal to you, and thanks for being here.
Buying a didgeridoo for a beginner
Straight away, demand quality! Think about it this way... if you wanted to learn to play drums would you shop for one at a toy store? How much joy and encouragement would you get from a toy drum? Same with a didgeridoo. We know you can find cheaper didgeridoos elsewhere, but you get what you pay for, mate. You won't have to stretch your budget that far to get superior quality in sound, playability, and artwork.
When selecting a didgeridoo for a beginner there are two things to keep in mind: pitch and portability. While the word pitch is the correct term for the soundwave or drone of a didgeridoo, the word key has become the most common expression among didgeridoo players. Both words mean the same thing. A didgeridoo has only one pitch, so you play rhythm rather than melody. The common pitch range for didgeridoos is from high A to low A. Beginners should pick a didgeridoo somewhere in the middle of this scale, namely, C, C#, D or D#. (The # sign stands for sharp, so C# is a half note higher than C, and so on.)
As far as size goes, buying a bigger didgeridoo because it's within your budget may not be a bargain at all. In fact, didgeridoos over 5 feet long and/or heavy didgeridoos over 8 lbs could actually discourage a beginner from practicing. The pitch may be too high or too low, and if it's very heavy, the instrument will be left behind on camping trips, a visit to friends, or a jam session with other musicians. The size of the player is much less important, as even a six year old can pick up the basic sounds straight away.
Authentic eucalyptus didgeridoos
Our specialty at L.A.Outback. Since 1996 we've earned a solid reputation for hand selecting and importing the best variety and highest quality Eucalyptus Didgeridoos into the U.S. Naturally, we'd like for you to consider an Australian eucalyptus didgeridoo with genuine Aboriginal artwork, but there are other choices below to fit most budgets. The Eucalyptus Didgeridoos we import are naturally termite-hollowed, properly crafted and hand selected. They vary in price depending upon the quality of sound, rarity of shape or size, and how much time went into the crafting and/or artwork. The average cost for a great sounding unpainted eucalyptus didgeridoo is about $230, and the average price for a beautiful Aboriginal painted didgeridoo is around $320. We help support over 30 Aboriginal artists and crafters, and on this website you will find their photos, bios and information about the Dreamtime artwork on your didgeridoo.
Other choices include beautiful, resin-coated Bamboo Didgeridoos that are stunning that will blow you away!
Didgeridoo mouthpieces and your health
You won't find mention of this on most other didgeridoo websites (although they should). A concern about clean didgeridoo mouthpieces began with my very first trip to Australia. I had gone there to suss out contacts with Aboriginal artists and didgeridoo crafters from the Central Desert to far NE Arnhem Land. I also found gift shops filled with low quality souvenir didgeridoos, and folks were always trying to play them, including me! I started carrying disposable alcohol wipes, and then did some research about germs, viruses and antigens just to educate myself and our customers.
Truth be told, most folks rarely clean their mouthpieces and never get sick by sharing them. Still, we disinfect all of our mouthpieces with a product we call Didgeri-Clean. It contains tea tree oil (a natural antiseptic) and lavender oil, so your new didgeridoo will arrive clean, fresh, and ready to rumble! You can also purchase Didgeri-Clean from this website on our Didgeridoo Accessories Page.
The right stuff: Didgeridoo gear
Whether buying a didgeridoo for yourself or someone else, don't forget about the essentials! A carry bag, for example, comes in handier than you may think. It will insulate your didgeridoo from the elements and protect the artwork and finish from dings and scratches. Find all of your didge accessories on our Didgeridoo Gear Page.
You may also want to add a didgeridoo CD to your order, both for encouragement and inspiration. We import over 60 titles, everything from traditional aboriginal music to meditative to high energy dance grooves featuring the didgeridoo. To make your selections easy we have MP3 sound files for all of our CDs on our Didgeridoo Music Pages.
We're always here to help
Please feel free to contact us if you want help in selecting a didgeridoo from our website or shop, or if you have a question about any of our products or services. We can play the didgeridoos for you over the phone, and give you advice about an instrument that perfectly suits your needs and your budget.