(redirected from Balaphone)


or bal·a·phone  (bäl′ə-fōn′)
A large, usually pentatonic xylophone of West African origin, consisting of resonating gourds of graduated sizes under wooden bars which are struck with mallets.

[French balafon, from Maninka bala fɔ, to play the balafon (from bala, balafon + , to say, speak, play an instrument) or from a kindred source in another Mande language.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Accompanied by a variety of instruments (including such unfamiliar instruments as the theorbo, glass armonica, and balaphone), the vocalists generally sing and articulate nicely.
Graceful interlocking guitar lines, the resonant clunk of the balaphone, some of those wonderful West African female choruses, the great Cuban bassist Cachaito in to hold everything up, and, above it all, one of the most gorgeous voices on the planet.
(7) He obliged with pleasure, adding headpieces of individualized human beings to his pre-existing repertoire of non-anthropomorphic mask headpieces, thrones, balaphones, religious objects, and various other commissioned artworks carved in wood.