Help find missing flute

Dave Knowles with his flute.

A musician remains hopeful that he will find his beloved flute, which went missing nearly a month ago in Woodstock.

Dave Knowles, who now stays in Wilderness, returned to Cape Town to join folk-inspired band Roxton met Herki on stage at The House of Machines, on Wednesday May 18. After the performance, Mr Knowles and Josh Roxton, from Woodstock, hurriedly unpacked their gear and called it a night.

It was only the next day when Mr Knowles realised that his flute was not among the gear. He inherited the flute from his father, who died when Mr Knowles was 3.

The Nippon Gakki YFL211s silver-nickel vintage Yamaha flute is in a black hard plastic case with two pull-button latches and red velvet lining. The flute’s serial number is 051636.

After visiting countless music stores, second-hand and pawn shops in Woodstock and Observatory, Mr Knowles took to social media with a heartfelt plea to help find his flute, which he described as invaluable.

“My father played his flute beautifully. He is no more, and, as one of the few things which still link us, this instrument is invaluable to me. Absolutely irreplaceable and priceless. An heirloom I’d hope to pass on someday.

“Strange how such a simple thing can bring the same grief of having lost a loved one. I am truly traumatised. And made worse by how avoidable it was. Misplaced and mistaken for safe as gear was frantically unpacked from an e-hailing service into a dog-manic entrance in a rush from the rain. I realised in the morning that it was not where I’d thought. And likely was left for the dawn rays to light an opportune pawn sale for a lonely wanderer,” he said.

Mr Knowles has been travelling for years with his beloved flute and said he could not put a price on the memories it held. His only hope now is that someone in the community will recognise it.

“A stolen instrument is not easy to sell and not worth much as scrap. But a wily hustler may sell it to someone more experienced in moving such wares or may hold it until the noise dies down, sand off the serial number and attempt to sell it to a second-hand store, pawn shop or unscrupulous trader.

“The only hope now is that the noise does not die down, that the community of potential buyers keeps it in heart and mind and keeps their eye out for a flute that has obviously wandered far from home,” he said.

Mr Knowles is back home in Wilderness but keeps in touch with second-hand stores and community members. He is reluctant to buy another flute.

“An instrument is more than the sound it makes,” he said.

If you have any information, call Dave on 084 212 3745 or email dave.knowles.music@gmail.com