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Squeaking is one of the most frustrating obstacles beginning recorder players encounter.  Whether it is a continuous squeak or an occasional single one,  squeaks ruin good songs.  Fortunately, there is hope.   Generally, there are three main culprits of the squeak: Fingers, Air and Bubbles.

 


Leaky fingers are the most common cause of squeaks.  You must make sure that your fingers are completely sealing the hole.   Always play with flat fingers, never curved ones.  Imagining you are being finger-printed when you play may help you to flatten your fingertips.  Also, (according to the size of your hand), the tips of your fingers will reach, or possible hang over the side your recorder.      

Sometimes, squeaks occur when changing notes.  This is due to one of your fingers moving enough to barely unseal a hole.  When this happens, it is often the left thumb or your first finger that is moving.  Repetitive practice moving between notes will help train your fingers not to move.

 


If your fingers are sealing the holes tightly and you are still squeaking, you may be blowing to hard.   Remember, you want to blow softly, almost like whisper, when you are playing.  You may also want to check that you do not have too much of the mouthpiece in your mouth.  The tip of the mouthpiece should be in-between your lips, not touching your teeth!

 


Occasionally, a small condensation bubble may become trapped in your mouthpiece.  These squeaks typically occur after you have been playing on your recorder for awhile, usually longer than 15 minutes.  To clear condensation bubbles, place the recorder in your mouth as if you were about to play and inhale, sucking air up though the recorder and into your mouth.   Any condensation bubbles will be gone!

   2005-2009 Nancy Philbeck