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Other Instruments are listed in alphabetical order below.

 

 

Atentenben - Bamboo flute from Ghana, available in C or Bb tuning, approx. 15" l., $20.

atetenben.jpg (18619 bytes) Atentenben flutes.

 

Balafon - The Balafon consists of a number of wood bars each suspended at two points from a wood frame that also supports a set of gourd "resonators" which help to amplify and sustain the sound. The bars which are played with rubber-covered mallets. We feature balafons produced in Guinea, Mali, and Ghana. The balafon is used alongside djembes, doundouns, and other traditional drums and instrumentation in African music ensembles. Some balas now in stock are shown below.

  Balafons, Guinea, Mali, etc. (Bobo/Susu Balas)  
Balafons Guinea 21-note   750  
Guinea 15   425  
Jumbo Mali 22   2200  
Mali 21   750  
Mali 20   750  
Mali 15   400  
Mali 13   275  
Mali 8    125  
 
 

Claves - These are among the most-ancient of musical instruments, simply being a pair of short heavy hardwood sticks struck together using techniques and simple rhythms that have been evolved by traditions and players in Africa and especially Cuba, where it is practically revered as the percussive 'metronone' of tropical Latin music called son (which rhymes with "tone") and its more modern descendents rumba, mambo, salsa, etc. Our claves (in Spanish "clave" means key) are made in Cuba of what is regarded as one of the densest hardwoods: Lignum Vitae. This wood gives the claves a powerful resonance and also happens to be an attractive dark brown-marbled-with-blond wood.

We offer two styles: African (hollowed out) and Cuban (solid), both made in Cuba. The African style offers more latitude for sonic expression (in traditional idioms), and for either type, the resting hand playing position is critical. When you hold the claves just right and strike down onto the resting clave, they should punctuate a sharply clear specific steady rhythm (so other drummers and dancers can lock into your groove). Solid Cuban Claves (not pictured) are approx. 1.25" diameter x 7" long. African-style (hollow) - or Cuban-style (solid) - your choice, $29 per pair.

African ClavesAfrican-style Claves shown with included Striker Clave (and optional straight-stick striker)


 

Mbira -  Professionally made by various Zimbabwean artists. Mukwa wood soundboard. Strong well-formed keys of good-quality metal. The Shona people of Zimbabwe and surrounding regions are expert makers and players of the mbira, an original African portable melodic instrument, which was and remains a standard instrument for griots.

These are designed and made for maximum music tone and optimal playability by experts, and are worth every penny; however if you crave a similar plucked sound for less, an alternative is the less-costly Sanza. If you want to maximize the volume of this fully acoustic instrument, we can supply a suitable Deze (gourd resonator) that reflects and amplifies the sound for around $50. Also these flat soundboard type instruments can be fitted with a contact mic for taking the sound to a new demension.

 

  Zimbabwe Mbiras

 

Mbiras (Zimbabwe) Size*  
    
8-key large    
15-key Nyunganyunga    
22+-key Dzavadzimu     
All instruments in stock

 

 

 

Oja - Eastern Nigerian three-hole wooden whistle. This flute-like whistle can be played with other instruments or on its own. Played by a master, it can also evoke word sounds. Click here for more information on the OJA flute.

  Ojas  
oja.jpg (23282 bytes) Length* Price
5"   10  
8"   15  
10"   20  
*Note: Hand-made whistles. 
All lengths are approximate. 

 

 

 

Sanza - Thumb piano made with metal keys and a gourd resonator (larger size decorated with wood-burned African mask motif), from Burkina Faso. Surprisingly full tone for such a small instrument.

  Burkina Sanzas  
Burkina Sanzas Burkina Sanzas
Tin   
16  
6 inch Gourd
32
9 inch Gourd   
48  
 
 

 

 

 

Tambourine - A widely used instrument in many cultures, the Tambourine has been used for centuries as an accompaniment for singing in African worship services. Various sizes and shapes are made with 3/8" plywood or cane. Click here to find out more about the roots of the tambourine.

  African Tambourines  
tambourine.jpg (30715 bytes) Shape Size* Price
Round Cane Type 10 inch 18
Heart shapoe with handle 10"  
16
 
 

 

 

 

Water Drum / Calabash - These drums are made from large West African gourds. Selected for their smooth, round shape, they are cut in half, scraped clean and carefully dried. priced per bowl.

  Calabash Drums  
3 Pairs of Water Drums
*Size of outer diameter (approximate).
These are natural gourd
, sizes and shapes vary.
Size* Price
8"   8  
9"   10  
10"   15  
11"   20  
12"   25  
13"   30  
14"   35  
15"   40  
16"   45  
17"   50  
18"   55  
20"   60  
Base (Woven)  
 

 

 

Wood Block - The African Wood Block, an ancient instrument, is made from a piece of hardwood hollowed out with a deep slot on one edge. When played on the thick edge, it produces a sharp clave-like sound which can be heard over the drum ensemble. Played on the thin edge, its sound can be hollow and full. This type of wood blocks is made in the Ibo region of Nigeria, where it is called an Okpokolo. Wood Block, Red is made from handsome red Padauk wood and its timbre is from medium to sharp. Wood Block, Brown is made of Oma wood and its timbre is in the lower, softer range (Oma is also used in the 3-in-1 Batá set). Playing stick is included. Extra red and brown playing sticks are available—they can also serve as nice fairly-short general-use straight sticks for other African percussion, including most Oghene bells and smaller peg-tuned drums.

  African Wood Blocks
woodblock.jpg (11659 bytes)
Red Wood 4" × 8"
20 
Brown Wood 4" × 8"
20
Brown stick 9"
Red stick 9"
3
One playing stick provided with each wood block
 

 

 

 

Xylophone - Dagara xylophone from northwestern Ghana. Frame and keys made of hardwood; each key has a sized gourd resonator. Ghana Rubber-Tire Head Xylo Mallets (not included) are available separately.

  Ghana Xylophones  
xylophone12note.jpg (31599 bytes)
Size  
Price
5-note  
 
85     
8-note  
125  
10-note
220
14-note  
350  

Ex-Mallet

12/pr.
 

 

 


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