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 (ĕm-bîr′ə, əm-)
A musical instrument consisting of a hollow gourd or wooden resonator and a number of usually metal strips that vibrate when plucked. Also called kalimba.

[Of Bantu origin; akin to Shona m-bìrà.]


(Instruments) an African musical instrument consisting of tuned metal strips attached to a resonating box, which are plucked with the thumbs. Also called: thumb piano


A traditional Zimbabwean musical style originating with the Shona people and named for the mbira hand piano which is the style’s primary instrument.
References in periodicals archive ?
The band's name is taken from the African thumb piano featured on each of the classic funk-soul group's albums.
This has a sound that resembles an African thumb piano but the appearance of a harmonium or pump organ.
And our brief glimpse at the stageshow with the camp's Rory the Tiger mascot and friends on stage suggested it was much more popular with the kids than the African thumb piano session.
Too bad Saarinen didn't dance but instead wandered the stage playing viola de gamba, African thumb piano, and guitar, while five dancers in tattered costumes seemed to stagger endlessly behind a scrim.
This last gives him the ability to play counter melodies in both left and right hands which sometimes sound remarkably like the bubbling tunes of the African thumb piano.
Mango took to the stage with just her African thumb piano, or kalimba, for company and gently eased into My Lung.
He is a composer and singer, as well as playing piano and keyboards, the African thumb piano (known as a sanza) and even a pygmy flute.
Stephanie Graffiti is a seriously dynamic electric violinist, evoking a Balkan gypsy wedding one moment, summoning up the ghost of Papa John Creach the next; and when she's not doing that, there are mandolin and African thumb piano duties for her to perform, and she shakes fruit, too (percussion, that is).
it was Earth, Wind and Fire who turned people on to the sounds of the African thumb piano with their Kalimba Song.
On it, Cervantes plays a Humphrey-crafted African thumb piano.

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