All I can come up with is the adjective lilting.

  • 1
    Are you looking for a better adjective? If so, what's unsatisfactory about lilting? Or are you looking for a noun or something else? Feb 8 '14 at 3:27
  • There probably isn't anything in the same way a drum makes drumming, or a whistle makes whistling/a whistle. Most instruments don't have dedicated adjectives/nouns for their own particular sound. And if you just want any descriptive word, such as lilting, it's probably subjective/POB (it might also depend very much on how someone plays the flute). Feb 8 '14 at 4:03
  • It would help if you gave us a sample sentence with a gap where the word would fit. The extra context will help. For example are you referring to classical music? Folk music? Something else? Aug 30 '15 at 20:47

I believe the answer you are looking for is:

piping 2. (Music) b. The music produced by a pipe when played.

pipe 5. (Music) a. A tubular wind instrument, such as a flute.

  • All 11 pipers are piping to this answer.
    – bib
    Feb 8 '14 at 18:25

There is "tootle" and "tootle-too".

tootle n. 3. the sound made by tooting on a flute or the like.

tootle-too sound of a flute (“the ceremonial band” by James Reeves, in “Noisy poems” by Jill Bennett)

  • 1
    Classical and orchestral players would be insulted if you called it tootling. Let's get some more context. Aug 30 '15 at 20:48

I would suggest "trill", which has a specific musical meaning, but is a technique often used by flautists.

  • Trill is only one of the ornaments available to flute playing; they are also available to a wide range of instruments, including the human voice. Your answer is akin to offering glissando or tremolo as a solution here.
    – Robusto
    Feb 8 '14 at 12:08

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