28 December 2019

EZ Numbers-Based eBook for Almost Any Kalimba

Written by Mark Holdaway, Posted in News and Announcements

Give the new eBook a Test Drive for Free

My gift to the kalimba world is kalimba tablature. It is expressive and elegant. It can display any sort of music, and it reflects my internal conceptualization of the kalimba and its music.

However, not everyone likes my vertical tablature.

If the tablature is too much for you, you might want to try the Numbers-based approach. Yes, it is "Play by the Numbers" - but it really isn't very far off from one of the ways I think about and understand music.

This is a perfect place for young children to start playing kalimba.



The idea is that you should use a Sharpie marker to draw a few numbers on select tines on your kalimba, representing the "1", "2", "3"... and so on... of the scale. I show you which tines to number for the Hugh Tracey Alto kalimba, Hugh Tracey Treble kalimba, the 8-Note, 10-Note, and 17-Note in C kalimbas. You don't need to number all of the tines, just the ones that a given section uses.

When you are ready to do something else, you can remove the markings on your tines with alcohol wipes.

This easy numbers-based ebook can be used for virtually any kalimba - draw the numbers on the tines with a Sharpie Marker and go to town learning the 63 songs, complete with live links to sound recordings.

The songs here are presented with large print lyrics and the number for the note that must be played with that word. If you can sing the song, you will be able to play this! The first two sections teach songs that use only 6 different notes. The next two sections cover songs with 8 different notes. The final section takes on 11 notes.

The whole trick is: which tine gets which number? We show you exactly how to do that for several different well-known kalimbas: the 8-Note kalimba, the Hugh Tracey Treble, the Hugh Tracey Alto, the 10-Note Kalimba in C, and the 17-Note Kalimba in C.

The 63 songs are generally well-known and simple, including:

"Mary Had a Little Lamb", "Oh! Suzanna", "Amazing Grace", "Go Tell it on the Mountain", "This Little Light of Mine", "Old McDonald", "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star", "Row, Row Row Your Boat", "Will the Circle Be Unbroken", "She'll be Comin' Round the Mountain When She Comes", "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen", "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot", "Simple Gifts", "Jingle Bells", "Joy to the World", "The Banana Boat Song", "Ode to Joy", and more!

This is a perfect place for a beginning kalimba player to start their kalimba journey.

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.

Comments (2)

  • Mary dunne

    Mary dunne

    20 May 2019 at 15:55 |
    I do not read music. What is the best way for me to learn your tablet your method. Do you have books, websites etc. where I can learn how to use your tablet yourmethof


    • Mark


      20 May 2019 at 16:57 |
      Look here for reading tablature: www.kalimbamagic.com/tablature

      Next, I advise you to get a tablature-based book that contains songs that you already know (Christmas or AMericana?) - you should be able to follow along with the tablature.

      - Mark


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