The best ways to play the kalimba as a trio

The kalimba is well and truly known as a one-person instrument. But have you ever thought of playing with more than one? Playing a kalimba ensemble can be great fun and full of surprises. There are even trios formed by this type of instrument. In this article, we'll show you the best ways to play the kalimba in a trio.

Some basic rules for a kalimba trio

First of all, it's important to understand that the way a kalimba is played is unique to the player. Each musician can therefore choose the note or rhythm he or she wishes to play. However, a universal rule for the kalimba is that you must maintain the tempo as you play. This will keep your strings aligned and create a superb overall effect.

What's more, each member of the trio will have to learn to listen to the others. This means making sure that each player knows how to play the right notes at the right speed. Working together is essential. Each player must bring his or her own piece to the puzzle, and not play the victim, which could lead to tension.

Features to consider

In terms of features to consider when playing a kalimba trio, amplification is very important. Remember that a kalimba has no nose and needs to be amplified if played in public. If you want to play with a trio, you'll need a fairly powerful sound system. It's also important to make sure that all the instruments synchronize correctly and that they are the same for each player.

After considering the power of the amplification, the other feature to consider for your kalimba trio is the type of kalimbas to use. This type of instrument is very versatile and offers many options, particularly in terms of sizes and tones. It's important to select the right kalimbas for your band, as each kalimba has its own sound that can add depth and texture to your playing.

Getting started

Start with the easiest. You can learn to play the kalimba in a group, performing simple, common tunes. You can also learn to play well-known tunes in a kalimba trio. However, it's very important to start slowly, first by playing single-player tunes. That way, you'll be better able to listen to the nuances of the other players and find interesting refrains.

Start by practicing in the comfort of your own home, then when you're more comfortable, try playing in more public places such as concerts or festivals. Also, try using rhythm changes to add interest to your playing and vary the sound level of the instruments. This can help build a good foundation for your kalimba trio.


The kalimba is a versatile instrument and can be enjoyed with several players. The kalimba is an ideal choice for starting out in ensembles. Practicing kalimba group playing can also improve your ability to work as a team and coordinate your movements. If you want to try playing the kalimba in a trio, make sure you follow the right rules, use the right features and get off to a good start. You won't be disappointed!