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Mark Holdaway

Amazing Tunings of the Magical Star-13 Kalimba

Are you looking for a different kind of kalimba experience? The Star-13 Kalimba is quite different from your standard 17-Note kalimba:   This kalimba has a crystal clear, beautiful ringing tone and long sustain. The special wah-wah effect, made by raising the kalimba up and down on a flat surface, gives you a great level of tonal expressiveness. The note layout, with 6 upper row notes and 7 lower row notes, provides interesting harmonic opportunities. It also inspires combining melody and self accompaniment. The range is soothing, going down to a G, lower than your typical kalimba in C. Even though the low note on the Star-13 Kalimba is G,

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Mark Holdaway

Instructional Booklet for the Star-13 Kalimba

  This 40-page booklet uses colorful photos, graphical illustrations, tablature, and live sound links to convey how I play some of my favorite songs on the Magadi Star-13 kalimba. The Magadi Star-13 Kalimba is a super cool instrument. It is angelic in sound, with expressive mind-blowing special effects, and it is also really fun to play because of the unique note layout. Available Oct 11 2021: This hard copy booklet (small format, 6″ x 6″, so it fits the kalimba’s footprint) has 40 pages in four sections: Quick Start for people who already play kalimba (8 pages); Introduction for people new to the kalimba (10) pages); Easy Songs (8 pages);

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Mark Holdaway

Do You Want to Travel Strange New Lands With Your Kalimba? Consider Exotic Tunings

Whenever I change the tuning on my kalimba in a small way, I have the sense that I am standing next to a great ocean of possibilities. I have experimented with hundreds of retunings. However, even a 13 tine kalimba will have billions of possible tunings. No matter how deep I go into alternative kalimba tunings, I will only scratch the surface of those possibilities. This blog post tries to do the math in a simple but persuasive way. By the way, those billions of tunings? Some will have redundant notes, meaning the same note twice, or more. But that is a thing in traditional African tunings. Another consideration: there

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Blog
Mark Holdaway

Are You Looking For Direction on Your Kalimba Journey? Steve Found His Direction With Kalimba Magic!

Customer Steve Says: “The other day a friend of mine asked why I had purchased so many kalimbas from Kalimba Magic. I bought several from other distributors and tried to find music to learn the kalimba. I made little progress until I found Kalimba Magic.   “I saw that Mark Holdaway had developed music training programs for many different types of kalimbas. The tablature-based music was easy to understand, downloadable as PDFs, and very inexpensive considering their great quality. The pricing of the instruments seemed reasonable so, I started to learn with a 15 key Alto Kalimba. It sounded good to me and felt very resonant in my hands. There

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Mark

“Loving the 10-Note Kalimba while vacationing in Hawaii!”

Aloha Mark! “I’ve been playing the 10-Note Kalimba here on the trails and beaches of Kauai and realized how deeply it resonates with my newfound island-style soul. It’s perfect in every way for satisfying my musical expression needs and desires. I showed your website to our friend who owns this kalimba and she was awestruck by the wealth of resources and tablature you’ve created. We read your well-written blog entries and were energized to resume learning some favorite songs. We are confident that by investing a modest amount of time on a daily basis, playing the kalimba will become even more fun and intuitive and we’ll start progressing beyond our

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Blog
Mark Holdaway

The Joys of Playing the Pentatonic Kalimba

There has been so much rush in the direction of the 17-Note Kalimbas in recent years. There are a lot of other kalimba possibilities out there, each offering their own types of experiences. While any kalimba can be tuned to a pentatonic scale (see Maurice White’s “Evil Tuning”, which is a pentatonicaly tuned 17-Note Treble), you get something altogether different when you make a specially designed pentatonic kalimba. In this video, I feel wild and extremely powerful playing the minor pentatonic scale on this kalimba. What is the pentatonic scale?   An important thing to know: primitive cultures all around the world used the various pentatonic in their music and

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Mark Holdaway

Mufrika Edward Style Karimba on Board or Box – With New Download

I have finished a 54-page PDF instructional download for the Mufrika Edward style Karimba. This includes traditional Karimba songs from the historic repertoire,  songs from Mufrika, and my own insights into making music on this instrument. The download comes for free when you purchase one of the Mufrika Edward style Karimbas. I am now re-making these karimbas on both Hugh Tracey Celeste Boards (left) and the Hugh Tracey Alto Boxes (right). @kalimbamagic##mufricaedward ##karimba ##mbiranyunganyunga♬ original sound – kalimbamagic I am enjoying the Mufrika Edward Karimba as much as I enjoy my Hugh Tracey African-tuned Karimba. It produces different music, so both instruments have a place in my life. Reminder: I

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Mark Holdaway

Hugh Tracey Chromatic Treble Kalimbas Expected By Sept 15 2021

You can now pre-order the Chromatic Treble Kalimbas. They have been out of stock since January 2021. The good news is that a kalimba resupply mission should be leaving from Africa in early September 2021. I should have these kalimbas in stock around September 15 2021. Pre-order Chromatic Celeste Treble Kalimba (Board Mounted) Pre-order Chromatic Treble Kalimba (Box Mounted) We currently have these chromatic kalimbas in stock: The somewhat larger Chromatic Alto Kalimba (15 front, 13 back), The board-mounted Chromatic Celeste Alto Kalimba (15 front, 13 back). The hard thing about the chromatic kalimba is that the chromatic notes are on the back side of the kalimba. The easy thing

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Blog
Mark Holdaway

Resources For the 17-Note Kalimba in C

Everything we have that will work for your 17-Note Kalimba in C Get a 17-Note Kalimba   I have recently written some great books and PDF downloads for the 17-Note Kalimba in C. These books use kalimba tablature, which is easy to read and very expressive. In addition to tablature and recordings for each song, these instructional guides offer insights into how to read the tablature, how to tune, the kalimba’s history, how to accomplish the various moves you need to make on your kalimba, and more. Everything you need to have a wonderful kalimba ride! Says one recent customer, after she purchased our instructional downloads: “Mark, I am already

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