Ref. N6913 - N
Kalimba Hugh Tracey Celeste alto - 15 tones G Major with Pickup
The Kalimba, commonly known as "thumb piano", is a percussion instrument (family of lamellophones and idiophones) originally from Africa. It takes different names depending on the region: Karimba (Uganda), Kondi (Sierra Leone), Likembe (Congo), Mangambeu (Cameroon), Mbila (South Africa), Mbira (Zimbabwe), Sanza
It was then carried by the slaves to Latin America, where it gave birth to the Cuban Marimbula and the Jamaican Rhumba Box.
Nowadays, there are also "Westernized" models, designed to adapt to various musical styles: tuning, design, technical innovations such as resonance skin or amplification, etc ...
This very high-quality kalimba is a professional instrument manufactured by the renowned Hugh Tracey firm in South Africa (see the paragraph below to go further)
It is the "celeste" (= alto) model with 15 blades, mounted on a hollow resonance box in mubvamarope, the hardwood traditionally used for the making of mbiras in Central Africa and South Africa.
The body is pierced with a round ear on the top, as well as 2 holes of tremolo at the back, allowing to create a slight effect "wah-wah".
Sheffield silver-plated steel blades are tuned to a range of diatonic G major, and 6 of them are painted (blue or red depending on availability) to create a visual mark and thus facilitate play.
The range of the instrument covers more than 2 octaves.
This beautiful kalimba also has the peculiarity of being electro-acoustic: it can be played by plugging it into an amp, like a guitar, thanks to the special microphone built into the instrument during manufacture.
The jack for connecting the kalimba is located on the bottom right of the instrument on the front splint.
In acoustics, this kalimba enjoys a very beautiful sonority crystalline and powerful; Once plugged in, you can let your imagination run wild and try multiple sounds and effects, like on the electric guitar: distortion, chorus, delay, etc ...
● Height: 21 cm
● Maximum width: 15 cm
● Maximum body thickness: 4 cm
- Made in South Africa -
An high class kalimba, ideal for demanding musicians and at ease in all circumstances, both for an intimate game and for the stage! The pleasure to play on a high quality instrument, with impeccable finishes!
★ To go further
Hugh Tracey (1903-1977) is a renowned English ethnomusicologist who has devoted his life to the production of a very important collection of traditional South African music recordings and the publication of this important cultural heritage.
Arrived in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe, renamed in 1980 at the time of his independence) at 18 years, he discovers the songs of the workers Karangas (ethnic clan Shona people) in the tobacco fields where he works. Aware of the essential place of music within African society, he began to learn these songs and then decided to compile them using the first portable recording machines, traveling through Southern Rhodesia.
It is during this long work with the Shona tribes that Hugh Tracey becomes acquainted with a musical instrument that will fascinate him ... the mbira, or piano of inches. He will create a more "western" adaptation that he will call "Kalimba" ... Indeed, few people know, but if today this term has become a generic name very widely used throughout The world to designate all kinds of pianos with inches, the word Kalimba is in fact originally a trademark registered by Hugh Tracey for this instrument inspired by the African mbira of which he is the inventor!
Today, the Hugh Tracey brand always embodies excellence and tradition. It is a pledge of high quality instruments, made by enthusiasts eager to continue the work of Hugh Tracey and to make known to all the enchanting song of African mbira.