bamboo flute "Suling" is another family name for a variety of flutes in
different shapes, pitches and sizes. While the long white "Suling" of
the "Tarling" and Gamelan ensembles are clearly distinguished by their
two scales in "slendro" and "pelog" mode, the bigger "Suling" (see
below) from Bali and other islands are free in scale.
The Suling plays along the core melody in the Gamelan. The player uses
the circular breathing technique in order to produce a never ending
sound. While the tonal range is limited to few notes, sometimes
overblowing the flute creates another octave.
Richly ornamented and carved models are famous on the smaller islands.
As the voice of a flute is believed to represent the voice of divine
beings, the appearance of the flute sometimes tries to depict this
demon or ghost.
In the "Tarling" chamber music, the Suling accompagnies the "sitar" zither.
This is the only solo tradition for this instrument.