Making Lamellaphones – Bart Hopkin


233 pages, design principles and plans for dozens of different kalimbas.

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People have been making kalimbas and mbiras for thousands of years, but people are also figuring out new kalimba designs all the time. In Making Lamellaphones by Bart Hopkin and Richard Selman, both the past and the future come into clear focus.

This 233-page book will tell you more than you can imagine about building your own kalimba. This book will teach you about acoustics, the physics of tine vibration, variations of tine design, the important of a firm physical mounting between tine and kalimba body, and the importance of enough countermass in the kalimba body to sustain tine vibration. Learn how the Africans did it, and learn how new age thinkers around the world are doing it.

Complete with downloadable recordings to demonstrate different kalimbas. Even if you don’t ever build a kalimba, this book will help you understand and appreciate how your kalimba works.

Bart Hopkin is in a league of his own when it comes to musical instrument design and building.

Check out this review of Building Lamellaphones.

Additional information

Weight 0.9 lbs
Dimensions 6 × 10 × 0.75 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.