11 January 2019

New Easy-to-use Download for 17-Note Kalimba in C

Written by Mark Holdaway, Posted in News and Announcements

44 Beginner Songs Replaces Clunky 66-Song Download

At the end of last summer, Amazon sales of inexpensive Chinese-made 17-Note kalimbas tuned to the key of C started to spike. These kalimbas were delivered to people with either a short instructional manual in Chinese, or no instructions at all. Peeved customers who bought from Amazon found me, vented their frustrations, and begged me for an English version of the short Chinese manual.

Of course, I saw a great opportunity. I shot from the hip and made a "primitive" Zip file download for the 17-Note in C from an earlier version of "66 Songs" for a different kalimba. But a significant fraction of those who have purchased this Zip download have trouble a) finding the download button, and b) dealing with ZIP files.

With this new single PDF download, "44 Beginner Songs for the 17-Note Kalimba in C," I have eliminated the customer's need to deal with a ZIP file. You will, however, still need enough tech savvy to be able to find the download link in your Kalimba Magic email invoice. If not, there is always email.

 

This "44 Beginner Songs" download partially replaces the clunky, old "66 Songs Download." How is the "44 Songs" superior?

  • First, the "44 Songs" has been formatted into an easy-to-download and easy-to-view 62 page PDF file. That means you can download it and view it on your computer, phone, laptop, tablet, or iPad. You can even save it to and view it with iBooks.
  • Rather than having to search  the downloaded "Songs" (audio) folder for an MP3 file that may or may not be there for a particular song, you just click on the sound icon at the top of each song's page, and your web browser will be driven to download the MP3 file so you can hear exactly how the song goes.
  • I have excluded songs that are too difficult for beginners.
  • I have simplified some of the other songs to make them more appropriate for beginners.
  • I added more "Level 1" songs, using well-known children's songs and simple exercises.
  • Instead of having recordings for only 1/4 of the songs, this collection has recordings for every song (well, through page 50 to date... the rest are coming very soon).
  • I have organized this ebook in a reasonable way for learning, I have improved the formatting of each song, and I have added helpful text in places to aid you in learning the lessons these songs have to offer.

Look at the Table of Contents from the download and see the songs that are in this ebook:

44B Songs 17C TOC

And if you are a skilled kalimba player, I think the "Level 3" songs will probably be your speed. If there are not enough "Level 3" songs in this download for you, just wait a few days and we will have the companion download: "33 Intermediate Songs for the 17-Note Kalimba in C," which presents the more difficult songs that were cut from the original "66 Songs" to create the "44 Beginner Songs" download. The "33 Intermediate" download is quite close to completion, so you will be seeing it very soon.

And while we are at it, I also had a brainstorm last night that precipitated the idea of "22 Killer Songs for the 17-Note Kalimba"  - a collection of my own compositions created especially for this kalimba.

After that, I suppose I need to create "11 Songs for Kalimba Heroes," and then "One Song to Bind Them All." But I have not gotten clarity on those ones yet.

Below is page 22 from the "44 Songs" ebook, the song "Michael Row Your Boat Ashore." The column of tablature on the left is the melody only (Level 1). The column on the right, with chords added at the beginning of each measure, is Level 3. As are the sound icons in the ebook, this image is "live" - go ahead and click it to see what happens. Can you listen and follow along with the tablature visually?

MichaelRow The above page from the download encapsulates my hope for you - regardless of your playing level, there are good songs here for you to dig into, and that in time you will progress from Level 1, to Level 2, and then on to Level 3 songs right here in this book.

By the way, the gray columns in the tablature represent painted tines. Kalimba Magic paints the tines this way on all 17-Note kalimbas; it helps immeasurably in reading tablature and learning to play. Painting (which is done with permanent enamels of various colors) is optional, however, and if you get your kalimba unpainted, you may want to "paint" those tines with a Sharpie marker - this will last some weeks before it wears off and you need to reapply, or you can remove the Sharpie marks with alcohol wipes. 

About the Author

Mark Holdaway

Mark Holdaway

Mark Holdaway has been playing kalimba for over 30 years.  He invented his kalimba tablature in 2004, and has been writing books and instructional materials for kalimba ever since.  His business, Kalimba Magic, is based on the simple proposition that the kalimba is a real musical instrument capable of greatness.  Mark's kalimba books are a down payment on this proposition.