Where Did The Mbira Instrument Originate?

The story goes that the mbira first appeared on the West African coast in wood or bamboo , before receiving the adornment of metallic keys on the banks of the Zambezi River 1500 years ago. Unlike the guembri of the Gnawas, or the Hindu sitar, the mbira is not the instrument of a single people.

Which country did mbira originate?

The thumb piano, or mbira – a name derived from Shona language of Zimbabwe – is uniquely African percussion instrument. In the distant past it was made entirely of wood or bamboo and could have been used for a few thousand years.

When did mbira originate?

Reported by European travelers as early as 1586 , the mbira is found in the same areas as the xylophone, to which its tuning is similar and with which it shares several local names. It was taken by enslaved Africans to Latin America, where it developed into a number of unique forms.

Who brought the mbira instrument in Zimbabwe?

The 15 key instrument originates from Tete province in Mozambique, but is today widely played in Zimbabwe having been popularised by Chiwoniso Maraire who brought it into the mainstream, as well as Hope Masike more recently.

What countries use the mbira?

The mbira is an instrument found throughout Africa It consists of metal keys attached to a wooden soundboard. The mbira has been a part of the Shona culture in Zimbabwe for over a thousand years, played for sacred ceremonies and celebrations.

Who invented mbira?

Popularized in the 1950s through a Westernized version designed by British ethnomusicologist Hugh Tracey (christened in this context as a kalimba), the mbira left its original land and its pure musical tradition to enter current music scenes where it has since flourished in various and unexpected forms.

What does the word mbira mean?

: an African musical instrument that consists of a wooden or gourd resonator and a varying number of tuned metal or wooden strips that vibrate when plucked.

What classification is mbira?

Note: Although this is classified as a plucked idiophone , the tongues (lamellas) are typically depressed and released creating the same effect as being plucked. This is done with the thumbs and fingers of the performer. The tongues can also be plucked as another type of performance effect.

What is an African instrument?

African musical instruments include a wide range of drums, slit gongs, rattles and double bells, different types of harps, and harp-like instruments such as the Kora and the ngoni, as well as fiddles, many kinds of xylophone and lamellophone such as the mbira, and different types of wind instrument like flutes and.

Which instrument is one of Africa’s oldest string instruments?

One of the oldest is the Gankogui , a bell instrument played by the Ewe people of Ghana.

What material is mbira made of?

Instrument construction Although the metal keys were originally smelted directly from rock containing iron ore, now they are made of steel from bed springs, bicycle spokes, car seat springs, and other recycled or new steel materials Rarely, a brass or copper key may be included.

What is the difference between a kalimba and a mbira?

The kalimba features the seven-note diatonic scale used in traditional Western music while the non-western scale of the mbira features the same notes but not in the same order Some notes may even be missing.

Why is the mbira important?

The most important function of mbira is as a “telephone to the spirits ”, used to contact both deceased ancestors and even more ancient tribal guardians, at all-night bira (pl. mapira) ceremonies.

What sound does a mbira make in words?

The word is pronounced mm-BYE-rah The first mbiras were created more than 3,000 years ago on the African continent, and were made of wood. More recent versions are made of wood with metal keys, or tines.

What is the mbira quizlet?

The mbira is a African musical instrument consisting of a wooden board (often fitted with a resonator) with attached staggered metal tines, played by holding the instrument in the hands and plucking the tines with the thumbs. The mbira is usually classified as part of the lamellaphone family.

What are indigenous Zimbabwe instruments?

Besides drums, traditional Zimbabwean music has a variety of percussive instruments, including shakers (hosho), leg rattles (magaga, magavhu and amahlayi) and wooden clappers (makwa).

What African instrument is similar to a harp or lute?

What is a bolon ? Bolons are a chordophone instrument, making sound by way of a vibrating string or strings stretched between two points, like harps or lutes. They are the ancestors of the better known African harp the kora and the lute like Ngoni.

What type of instrument is a Lamellophone?

Lamellaphones are typically classified as plucked idiophones —instruments whose sounding parts are resonant solids.

Who started sungura music in Zimbabwe?

This is the local genre of the Zimbabwe music industry. Sungura music became popular in the early 1980s, pioneered by frontman Ephraim Joe and his band Sungura Boys which counted many notable future hit makers as members.

Where did the kalimba come from?

This kalimba is a lamellaphone idiophone inspired by indigenous Bantu African instruments and manufactured in the Republic of South Africa.

What is the most distinct feature of mbira?

What Is the Most Distinct Feature of Mbira? The way in which you play the mbira is distinct. You stroke or pluck keys with your thumbs The resulting sound is reflective and pastoral, reminiscent of the traditions behind its creation.

How many types of mbira are there?

About twelve major types of mbira are played at the present day by the peoples of the central and lower Zambezi valley and en- virons.

What group of instrument does the djembe belong to?

The djembe is one of West Africa’s best known instruments. This goblet-shaped drum is traditionally carved from a single piece of African hardwood and topped with an animal skin as a drumhead. In western understanding, the drum belongs to the membranophone class of instruments in the percussion family.

Is Zimbabwe in South Africa?

Southern Africa, southernmost region of the African continent, comprising the countries of Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

What are slit drums made of?

slit drum, percussion instrument formed by hollowing a tree trunk through a lengthwise slit and sounded by the players’ stamping feet or by beating with sticks; the edges of the slit are usually of different thicknesses, so as to produce different pitches.

What type of instrument is the hosho?

The hosho are Zimbabwean musical instruments consisting of a pair of maranka gourds with seeds They are used as major instruments in many traditional Shona music genres, such as in mbira ensembles and in mhande. They typically contain hota seeds inside them.

Is idiophone a rattle?

A rattle is a type of percussion instrument which produces a sound when shaken. Rattles are described in the Hornbostel–Sachs system as Shaken Idiophones or Rattles (112.1).

What instruments did slaves play?

In addition to their singing, slaves played a variety of instruments, including drums, musical bow, quills or panpipes, and a xylophone called a balafo These African instruments did not have the widespread impact that another African instrument, the banjo, did.

What is the oldest African instrument?

The multiple-necked bow lute, or pluriarc , of central and southwestern Africa is the oldest. This has a separate flexible neck for each string and resembles a set of musical bows fixed at one end to a sounding box.

Did the guitar come from Africa?

The Guitar (Krar Harp) The Krar Harp or one of its variations later developed into the guitarro, the direct ancestor of the guitar which was used widely in ancient Mauritania, later known as the Maghreb, the Sahel and Guinea. Guitarro was introduced to Spain by African Moors in the 9th century AD.

Do maracas come from Morocco?

Maracas are of ancient Moroccan origin but are frequently used in ethnic music, particularly Latin, pop, and classical compositions today. It is especially prevalent in music of South American and Caribbean countries, such as Brazil and Colombia.

What instrument is not a membranophone?

Mirlitons, Kazoos and Swazzles vibrate in sympathy with sounds travelling across a membrane. These are the only membranophones that are not truly drums.

Who invented African music?

Early attempts at notating African music were made by T.E. Bowdich (1819) for Ghana, Karl Mauch (1872) for Zimbabwe, and Brito Capelo and Roberto Ivens (1882) for inner Angola Major and minor migrations of African peoples brought musical styles and instruments to new areas.