Matched Alto/Treble Pair


An Alto (right) and a Treble Kalimba (left), with optional pickups, with the kalimbas special-tuned with the Treble an octave higher than the Alto, in G, F#, F, or E

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I think the Matched Pair works best in F.
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A 15-Note Hugh Tracey Alto and a 17-Note Hugh Tracey Treble Kalimba, with optional pickups, with tines painted in the color of your choice, with a book of your choice included, with the kalimbas special-tuned with the Treble an octave higher than the Alto, to the key of G, F#, F, or E (other keys do not work with this exact setup – if you need another key, contact us).

This item is a lot like the Sweetheart Deal but the Treble is set up different. Normally the Treble’s high note is D6, or four notes higher than the Alto’s high note G5. The photo of product shows the Treble tines have been pushed in substantially (see the unpainted ends of the tines going past the box?). The Treble has been tuned up such that the top note is now G6, an octave above the Alto, extending the range of the pair. ALSO, the note layouts of the two instruments match exactly (but with the Treble is an octave higher, and of course it also has two extra notes in the center that do not match the Alto). This means anything you play on your Alto, you can also pick up the Treble and play the exact same tines (skipping over the lowest two) and play the same music – an octave higher.

Oh, and since these two kalimbas are set up the same way, they both read the Alto book. In case it is helpful, the Alto of the matched pair is set up like the standard Alto: G is exactly as it ships from Africa, F# has all tines pulled down a half step, F has a whole step tuned down, and E is tuned down 3/2 steps – note that if tuned to E, the low note doesn’t resonate that well, but is still acceptable to many ears. The Treble is set up as a D Treble, but it is tuned up by pushing in the tines, a whole step for E, 3/2 steps for F, two steps for F#, and a fourth for G. Note that as the tines have been pushed higher and extend beyond the back of the kalimba, these modified trebles can go out of tune if carried in the regular cardboard kalimba boxes unless extra padding is strategically placed to prevent the box from hitting the tines.

Package Contains
Hugh Tracey Alto Kalimba (PU is no longer available)
Hugh Tracey 17 Note Treble Kalimba (PU is no longer available)

Additional information

Weight 3.3 lbs
Dimensions 6.5 × 9 × 4.4 in



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. See answered questions.