The Joy of Yodelling
Check out The Yodelling Pickle
Sometimes my brain just goes walkabout and leaves me behind, looking more bewildered than usual. The thing is, I recently came across an article about yodelling. It recalled to mind that old line about “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.” It occurred to me that perhaps I should do a series of articles on that theme. On the other hand, of course, just because I can doesn’t necessarily mean I should… Nevertheless, that is my intent. And my first step into the mire is the very thing that spawned the idea: Yodelling.
To start with, can you believe that there actually is a yodel school in Berlin? I was shocked, too. It turns out that it is more of a yodel workshop–three hours on a Sunday afternoon–held in a hairdressing salon. (I hadn’t realised the Germans had such a sense of irony: from hairdressing to hair-raising.) In fact the yodelling teacher/salon owner, Doreen Kutzke, says people who can sing well tend to find yodelling problematic as they “are just not used to making those sounds.” Indeed. Kutzke also says, “It sounds a bit like a donkey. It’s really not a pretty sound, it’s really quite filhy.” She maintains that yodelling can be sung (her word) to jazz and classical music.
You have to check this out. It is NOT another yodelling pickle…
There must be some benefit/purpose to yodelling, I’m thinking. The cry (her word again) is used by African tribes to keep evil spirits away. Where there’s a yodeller, there are no demons. Hmmm.
Yodelling is also supposed to be a good means of releasing stress. I would have thought transferring stress might have been a better choice of words. The stress release comes with the realisation that when you yodel, you get to sing really loudly. Children pick up yodelling more quickly than adults, apparently, because they are more accustomed to being…well, loud. It’s impossible to yodel quietly.
I’m wondering how well it works to take yodelling out of the alpine countryside and bring it into an urban environment, especially in these multicultural days. I can imagine it being the ultimate cultural clash. I don’t know the cultural mix in Germany these days, but I’m betting there aren’t many demons. MM