Our friend and flutemaker from Southern California, Guillermo Martinez, will be at Fort Mason for the Contemporary Crafts market in San Francisco this weekend (March 11, 12). The event runs from 10 AM to 5 PM . He will also honor INAFA kokopelli bucks discount coupons. He has some special flutes that he just finished, so you're likely to find something good in his booth.
If you can't make the show, you can still check out and purchase a variety of his flutes from the Oregon Flute Store (tell JoAnn that Mike sent you...). My favorite flute made by Guillermo is the clay flute called the Tlapitzalli shown on the picture to the right. I purchased one of these flutes from Guillermo a couple years ago when he was at the De Anza Pow Wow. If you're not familiar with Guillermo's work, he makes both North American and South American style flutes. He is one of the few flutemakers who is skilled in making fine quality clay instruments. The Tlapitzalli is one of his creations, and is based on the design of Aztec temple flutes which he observed in the Mexico National Museum in Mexico city. At least that's the story that he related to me.
Another fun whistle which Guillermo makes is called the Tezcat. This whistle is designed similar to an Aztec instrument of the same name. I use this whistle to make any number of bird sounds.
Guillermo says that the the Tezcat whistle was used by Aztec priests during human sacrifice ceremonies. It is an incredibly loud instrument if you blow it wide open. As the story goes, the sound coming from a stadium full of folks blowing this whistle would put the crowd into a state of altered reality.