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24 Key Medium Mbira Thumb Piano Karimba Kalimba - C.Vambe Handmade in Zimbabwe! Product DescriptionNhare tuned by Cypren In Zimbabwe withbright sound.Oiled mahogany finish, mahogany hardwood constructionMedium size, Mellow toneI recently returned from Zimbabwe where I had a chance to meet with Cypren Vambe and one of his sons Richard who produced a short performance which was fabulous. Hand made from a block of carefully selected wood which is stained and sun dried prior to making the mbira so as not to interfere with the instruments acoustics. It has 22 metal squarish keys and has a particularly great tone to it with decent sustain. When each key is made they use a master mbira to adjust each key to sound the same as that master mbiras keys ensuring it is tuned correctly. This is the primary instrument of the Shona Zezuru people of Zimbabwe and has been for hundreds of years where the instrument first originated.In a typical mbira band performance there would be 4 mbira players, one playing bass, another playingrhythm,asub rhythmplayer, a lead and finally a dancer! It is quite entrancing to hear the various sections played together by experienced players. Compare this to other mbiras online retailing for over $200. Made from the same shona mbira masters as those were but at a fraction of the price. Being born and raised in Zim I can assure you this is an authentic Zim-bira!There are many links online showing one how to play the mbira ( http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=mbira&search_type= ) You can find tuning information for mbiras here which I encourage you to read in order to get the best use of this instrument, as the keys may still be adjusted up/down on the board to alter the tune. http://www.nscottrobinson.com/mbiratunings.php This could make a great gift. Thanks for looking.MbiraFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaInAfrican music, thembira(also known asLikembe,Mbila,Thumb Piano,Mbira Huru,Mbira Njari,Mbira Nyunga Nyunga,KarimbaorKalimba) is amusical instrumentconsisting of a wooden board to which staggered metal keys have been attached. It is often fitted into aresonator. In Eastern and Southern Africa there are many kinds of mbira, usually accompanied by thehosho. Among theShonathere are three that are very popular (seeShona music). The Mbira is usually classified as part of thelamellaphonefamily. It is also part of theidiophonesfamily of musical instruments. In some places it is also known as asanza.In the late 1960s to early 70ssanzawas the generic term used to describe these members of thelamellophonefamily. Mbira has now become so well known due to the work ofDumisani Maraire,Forward Kwenda,Ephat MujuruandPaul Berlinerthat it has now replacedsanzaas the generic term. Dr.Joseph H. Howard, owner of the largest collection of drums and ancillary folk instruments in the Americas, often stated it is "the instrument most typical of Africa." By this he meant that the instruments were only found in areas populated by Africans or their descendants.Babatunde Olatunjimade a similar statement in his book "Musical Instruments of Africa." He states the mbira "a fingerxylophone, is native to Africa and is common throughout the continent. It is known nowhere else except in parts of the Americas where it was taken by Africans."Mbira DzavadzimuInShona music, thembira dzavadzimu("voice of the ancestors", national instrument of Zimbabwe) is a musical instrument that has been played by theShona peopleofZimbabwefor thousands of years. Thembira dzavadzimuis frequently played at religious ceremonies and social gatherings calledmabira(sing. "bira").A typicalmbira dzavadzimuconsists of between 22 and 28 keys constructed from hot- or cold-forgedmetal affixed to a hardwoodsoundboard(gwariva) in three different registers—two on the left, one on the right.While playing, thelittle fingerof the right hand is placed through a hole in the bottom right corner of the soundboard, stabilizing the instrument and leaving thumb and index finger of the right hand open topluckkeys in the right register from above and below. The left hand is cupped around the left side of the instrument, with all fingers but the thumb placed behind the instrument. Both registers on the left side of the instrument are played with the left thumb.Bottle caps,shellsor other objects ("machachara") are often affixed to the soundboard to create a buzzing sound when the instrument is played. In a traditional setting, this sound is considered extremely important, as it is believed to attract theancestral spirits.During a public performance, anmbira dzavadzimuis frequently placed in adeze(calabashresonator) to amplify its sound.Religious and social significanceThembira dza vadzimuis very significant inShonareligionandculture, considered a sacred instrument by natives. It is usually played to facilitate communication with ancestral spirits.TuningTunings vary from family to family, referring to relative interval relationships and not to absolute pitches. The most common tuning is Nyamaropa, the westernMixolydian mode. Names may also vary between different families. For example,Garikai, whose family plays an "mbira orchestra" that has seven different tunings, each starting on a different interval of the same seven-note scale, calls his version of "Nyamaropa" the "Nhemamusasa" tuning. There are seven tunings that Garikai uses: Bangidza, Nyamaropa, Nhememusasa, Chakwi, Taireva, Mahoroho, and Mavembe (all of which are also names of traditional songs save for Mavembe).Common names for tunings are:Dambatsoko(Ionian mode) - Played by the Mujuru family. The name refers to their ancestral burial grounds.Dongonda- usually a Nyamaropa tuned mbira with the right side notes the same octave as the left (an octave lower than usual).Katsanzaira(Dorian mode) - The highest pitch of the traditional mbira tunings. The name means "the gentle rain before the storm hits".Mavembe(also: Gandanga) (Phrygian mode) - Sekuru Gora claims to have invented this tuning at a funeral ceremony. The mourners were singing a familiar song with an unfamiliar melody and he went outside the hut and tuned his mbira to match the vocal lines. Other mbira players dispute that he invented it.Nemakonde(Phrygian mode) - Same musical relationship as the mavembe, but the nemakonde tuning is a very low pitched version.Saungweme(Whole tone)Mbira Nyunga NyungaJeke (Jack) Tapera introduced theMbira Nyunga Nyungain the 1960s from Tete province of Mozambique to Kwanongoma College of African music (now United College of Music) in Bulawayo. Two keys were then added to make fifteen (Chirimumimba, 2007), in two rows. The mbira nyunga nyunga is similar in construction to the Mbira Dzavadzimu, but has no hole in the soundboard. Key pitch radiates out from the center, rather than from left to right.Zimbabwe'sDumisani Maraireoriginated mbira nyunga nyunga number notation. The upper row keys (from left) are keys 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 14 while the bottom row keys are notated as 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, and 15. Maraire brought awareness of this instrument to the United States when he came to the University of Washington as a visiting artist from 1968-1972.Recently aMidlands State University(Gweru, Zimbabwe) lecturer in the department of music and musicology has suggested a letter notation; the upper keys as (from first left upper key) E, D, C, F, C, D, and E and the lower or bottom keys as (from the first lower key) A, G, F, A, F, C, D, and E. But the Maraire number notation has remained the internationally accepted system (Chirimumimba, 2007).Mark Holdaway of Kalimba Magic has introduced a graphic form of tablature for the karimba, and traditional karimba tunes as well as modern songs and new compositions and exercises are available in this tablature.***********************************************************Please browse through my other listings in my eCRATER store here:http://stores.eCRATER.com/africancraftworkYou will find :Exclusive hand carved Shona Stone sculptures.Musical instruments from Zimbabwe such as drums, mbiras, maracas & marimbas.Wire frame & beaded motorcycles, cars and animals all hand assembledAn expanding quality selection of baskets and batik wall hangings.Walking sticks, masks and other ethno-bongo curio & art.Thank you! inkfrog terapeakinkFrog Analytics