Learn to play harmonics and vibratos simultaneously on the Kalimba

The Kalimba is a small version of an African and Caribbean instrument called mbira, or kosimusi and wumba. Mbiras are considered spiritual instruments that evoke strong emotions thanks to their ability to play harmonics and vibratos at the same time. The Kalimba's distinctive deep vibrations and gentle intonations, combined with rapid finger movements that produce simultaneous harmonics and vibratos, are highly distinctive.

Learning to play harmonics and vibratos on the Kalimba takes a little practice and time, although the basics can be learned quickly. If you take the time to practice regularly, to master this type of playing technique, you'll be able to produce sounds that are incredibly rich and expressive. Every piece you play will gain in depth and subtle nuances through the use of harmonics and vibratos.

The good news is that there are songs that make learning harmonics and vibratos on the kalimba much easier. The following songs are considered the best for learning to play harmonics and vibratos at the same time:

1. "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel

This song is very popular and easy to play on the kalimba. It's an iconic song that, when played with harmonics and vibratos, can give you a good foundation for learning to play complex melodies on the kalimba. Once you've mastered this song, you can easily move on to more challenging pieces.

2. "Skinny Love" by Bon Iver

"Skinny Love" is another classic that lends itself well to kalimba interpretation. This piece is known for its simple chords that are easy to learn. The melody is very strong and deep, and requires you to learn to play harmonics and vibratos at the same time to get a good result.

3. "The Sound of Silence" by Simon & Garfunkel

If you're looking for a deeper, more complex song, you should consider playing "The Sound of Silence" on the Kalimba. There are many more chords and sections to learn in this excellent piece. You'll be able to improve your feel for the music and melody while playing this song on the kalimba by combining harmonics and vibratos.

4. "Ripple" by The Grateful Dead

If you're ready to move on to a tune that features a more complex set of harmonics and vibratos, "Ripple" by The Grateful Dead is a tune that will do the trick right away. This song is best performed with harmonics and vibratos on the Kalimba, giving you the perfect opportunity to perfect your techniques.


By using these songs and taking the time to practice regularly, learning to play harmonics and vibratos at the same time on the Kalimba shouldn't take too long. Soon you'll be enjoying the highly expressive sounds you produce, and improving your ability to play complex, highly rhythmic melodies on the kalimba.