Since 1993 Michiel follows his heart and didgeridoo where ever it brings him! Check out his biography.
Some info about the origin's and tradition of the Yidaki
Michiel plays the didgeridoo for more than 25 years and developed himself as one of the leading players of Europe. He is inspired by rythmes from all over the world which he translates into pumping dance beats on the didge. He plays regularly on international festivals with the formations 3ple-D and Didge 'n Skins. He also performs with numerous bands and DJ’s as a special act and as a solo artist.
For many years he teaches didgeridoo students at the Percussion School Mi Dushi in his hometown Apeldoorn and the Aboriginal Art Museum in Utrecht as well as Museum Volkenkunde in Leiden. In his lessons and workshops he teaches the different sounds of the didgeridoo and uses them as building blocks for rythmes which students of different levels can easily use in their playing.
Apart from Michiel’s modern style of playing, he also studies the culture and traditions of the instrument. He has direct contact with people in Arnhemland, Australia, which he visits regularly for further studies and the select instruments for his shop.
With his activities Michiel wants to contribute to the acceptance of the didgeridoo as a full-fledges musical instrument.
Didge 'n Skins is a project created to get the people dancing.
Since the traditional use of the didgeridoo or Yidaki, like most forms of percussion, is mainly to accompany dancing, Michiel wanted to form a band, to make people dance on his original percussive didgeridoo grooves, for a long time.
Didge ’n Skins is a live organic dance experience based in the Netherlands.
They mainly use traditional instruments like djembe, conga, drums and didgeridoo to create full power dance grooves!
Drums: Robin van Rhijn
Latin percussion: Yannick van ter Beek
Check out our website!
If you are about to buy yourself a didgeridoo then you are very likely to get a non authentic instrument as 99% of all didgeridoos sold around the globe are not made by Aboriginal people from Arnhemland, Australia!
Yidaki is a form of the instrument which is played in North East Arnhemland and the Yolngu own the oldest stories on how the instrument came to existence. Yidaki are mostly conical shaped instruments and vary in key mostly between C and G. A perfect Yidaki has a 'toot' about an octave higher than the fundamental and needs no beeswax .
Mago, on the other hand, is more cylindrical in shape than a Yidaki, it has rich harmonics and the toot is absent in this style of music. Mago is the term used in Western and North Central Arnhemland.
There are a lot of different types of Yidaki/Mago and every type stands for a unique name, playing-style and sound character. A certain clan can have several varieties of the instrument, each with their own name and usage in ceremony, song-cycle or ritual. To make it even more complicated, a particular instrument can have a couple of different names, depending on the context.
In aboriginal-music Bilma or clap-sticks are the most important instruments (mostly representing time/law). Besides Yidaki and Bilma there are several other instruments known, mostly being percussion instruments like boomerangs and shaker's. In Northern Queensland, a skin-drum is played.
Out off the 500 different eucalyptus species only about 3 are commonly used for making Yidaki and Mago: Stringy-bark, Bloodwood and Woolly-butt . As you might already know the logs are eaten out by termites (Mastothermes darwiensis).
In tradition there is a big difference between ceremonial and public songs. The hearing/playing of ceremonial songs is often prohibited for the non-initiated while public songs are played for amusement. In general, Yolngu people encourage everybody to try to play Yolngu style and integrate their music into a new style. To some Yolngu it may cause offense if you copy clan songs exactly. Read more on this subject.