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Thread: just received an ipu for my birthday

  1. #1
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    Question just received an ipu for my birthday

    Aloha, I just received an ipu or ipu heke ole for my birthday. Does anyone play one of these? I know that you tap it with the heel of your hand and the tops of your fingers but where do you tap mostly? I have a little one. If you use YouTube videos, please describe them because I am visually impaired.
    Just so you know, it is a Hawaiian drum made from a gourd.

  2. #2
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    Aloha Cassie, glad to hear you have an ipu!
    There are no rules, just explore the sounds it will make by using different areas.
    Generally people sit on the floor and place a mat in front of them. One sound (usually more bass) is made by tapping the entire ipu on the mat on the floor. You generally hold it with your non-dominant hand at the skinny part between the gourds. Then you use your other hand to strike the ipu with the heel of the hand, slap it with your palm, or drum with your fingers.
    Enjoy discovering what sounds your ipu makes!
    1:5255
    My Quiver: S & J Craft Milo Tenor "Liliu" six string custom and Milo and Lychee concert by Emil Bader
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    Nothin' left to do but : ) : ) : )

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pueo View Post
    Aloha Cassie, glad to hear you have an ipu!
    There are no rules, just explore the sounds it will make by using different areas.
    Generally people sit on the floor and place a mat in front of them. One sound (usually more bass) is made by tapping the entire ipu on the mat on the floor. You generally hold it with your non-dominant hand at the skinny part between the gourds. Then you use your other hand to strike the ipu with the heel of the hand, slap it with your palm, or drum with your fingers.
    Enjoy discovering what sounds your ipu makes!

    Mahalo nui. When I looked in the box, it didn't come with the mat. It's one of the really small ones.
    This one is actually not the ipu heke. It is only the single gourd.

  4. #4
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    Ok. Try using a placemat.
    1:5255
    My Quiver: S & J Craft Milo Tenor "Liliu" six string custom and Milo and Lychee concert by Emil Bader
    Pono PKT-1 Koa Tenor w/MiSi, Lanikai LU-21T - Autographed!, Hikare CU 528 Baritone
    R&L all koa mini concert, Mainland Gecko, Epiphone Les Paul Vintage, Kala Concert
    Compass Rose 5 string
    Nothin' left to do but : ) : ) : )

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pueo View Post
    Ok. Try using a placemat.

    OK. That works. Anyhow, do they need any special care? I mean like do they need to be dusted or anything like that? I'm just wondering if there any special things I need to do to care for it

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Aloha Cassie,

    An ipu like yours is played while being held in the left hand. The open end points to the left. The hand supports the gourd from underneath with the thinnest part of neck cupped between the thumb and index finger. If it has wrist loop you can slide your hand through it first and not worry about accidentally dropping it.

    You can practice the tapping motion by holding your hands together flat with your fingers pointed away from you. Then, in a clapping motion, bring the heels of your hand together. That is what will produce the low thunk. With the same flat hands and clapping motion, bring your fingers together so contact is made at the first joint closest to the fingernails. That produces the high pitched tap.

    So with the ipu held sideways in your left hand, the bottom edge closest to you will be struck by the heel of the right hand. The bottom edge furthest away will be slapped by the flat fingers.

    In the center of the bottom you may be able to feel a rough spot, sometimes called the belly-button. You should avoid hitting it there. I am not aware of any special care though I'm sure it couldn't hurt to keep it dusted.

    I made a youtube ipu playlist for you. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbq9...KpC_9L7r45gCcJ

    I guess if you are left handed you could reverse all the directions given above.

  7. #7
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    OK, I got it. I don't feel rough spot but I do feel a little tiny hole.

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