15 Key Shona Mbira/Kalimba from Zimbabwe Nyunga Nyunga Style!

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Mystic sound from this Nyunga Nyunga style tuned Mbira from Zimbabwe. Hand made from a carefully selected block of wood with 15 metal keys and stained in a Rust Red. Jeke (Jack) Tapera introduced the Mbira Nyunga Nyunga in the 1960s from Tete province of Mozambique to Kwanongoma College of African music (now United College of Music) in Bulawayo. Two keys were then added to make fifteen (Chirimumimba, 2007), in two rows. The mbira nyunga nyunga is similar in construction to the Mbira Dzavadzimu, but has no hole in the soundboard. Key pitch radiates out from the center, rather than from left to right. Zimbabwe’s Dumisani Maraire originated mbira nyunga nyunga number notation. The upper row keys (from left) are keys 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 14 while the bottom row keys are notated as 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, and 15. Maraire brought awareness of this instrument to the United States when he came to the University of Washington as a visiting artist from 1968-1972. Recently a Midlands State University (Gweru, Zimbabwe) lecturer in the department of music and musicology has suggested a letter notation; the upper keys as (from first left upper key) E, D, C, F, C, D, and E and the lower or bottom keys as (from the first lower key) A, G, F, A, F, C, D, and E. But the Maraire number notation has remained the internationally accepted system (Chirimumimba, 2007). Mark Holdaway of Kalimba Magic has introduced a graphic form of tablature for the karimba, and traditional karimba tunes as well as modern songs and new compositions and exercises are available in this tablature.


  • 15 Keys tuned in the Nyunga Nyunga Style
  • Gentle tone and good key response
  • Stained solid wood soundboard
  • Created by Mbira master Cypren Vambe


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