8 Facts About The Recorder S’poreans Used to Learn in School

If there’s one question that we could ask God, I think some of us might ask this: Why do we learn how to use the recorder in secondary school?

Now granted that it allowed us to learn about music through an inexpensive and light instrument, but won’t singing suffice?

I’m pretty sure asking someone from MOE would provide the answer, but this article isn’t about this: instead, it’s about that instrument we’re so used so: do you know that the biggest recorder is…2.4m long?

Yeah, that’s taller than all of us.

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Here’re eight facts about the recorder you probably wish you’d known earlier (so that you can impress your crush in school)!

Recorders make kids “hate” music

Shocked? I am, too.

In a 2002 study, 1,209 students were surveyed, and due to the limitations of the instruments, they “stopped feeling motivated to play music.” Of course this might not be a complete representation, but numbers don’t lie: so if you want your kid to pursue a career (or hobby) in music, let him or her try more instruments instead.

Recorder is making a comeback after this

Pretty sure you’ve heard of this somewhere before.

Known as the “bad recorder meme”, it is a bad recorder recording of Celine Dion’s “My Heart will Go On”. The number of 走声 makes it so viral, people are buying recorders and playing it to duplicate the results.

Hmm…I think I used to play like that, too.

There’s a recorder that is more than 2 metre

Here, take a look:

Image: Pinterest

Known as the sub-contrabass recorder, it produces very low note, and is made of plywood instead of plastic.

Given its size, it obviously doesn’t come cheap: one of these can be up to $10,000!

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Before 1960s, recorders were made with wood

By then, plastic has become mainstream, and when production of it didn’t compromise the sound quality, our recorder are now all white and plastic.

Heck, even if you see a brown one, it’s brown plastic instead.

It’s a flute but it’s called recorder for a reason

One reason that it’s called a “recorder” is that in the past, people used it as a flute to “record” it. Soon, it became known as recorder—so yes, the “record” is recorder literally means recording.

It “died” for almost 100 years

The recorder was first found to exist in the 12th century, and was most popular between 1500 to 1700. However, since 1759, better instruments came along and the recorder declined in popularity.

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It was only in 1919 that it was revived, and for one main reason: it’s a good instrument for amateurs to learn music.

Amateurs like us lah.


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You can make a recorder with a carrot

I don’t know why you’ll do that, but if you’re still a student and you forget to bring your recorder to school one day, this might come in handy.


Yeah, it really does work.

William Shakespeare is a fan of the recorder

There are many more notable figures who like recorders, but most of us would be familiar with this guy.

Image: biography.com

He even has a recorder in one of his plays (Hamlet) on stage!

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