Zimbabwe's Spritual InstrumentJUNE 28, 2008
- Weekend Soundtrack: "Shattered" by the Rolling Stones
- Saving the Story
- Good News, Bad News, No News
- Eat Cake
More From Suzie Lechtenberg
In Zimbabwe this weekend, Robert Mugabe is expected to be sworn in as president after an election that our own president has called illegitimate. This after widespread reports of violence against the political opposition.
These days, when you think of Zimbabwe, the elections are probably your first thought. But for a lot of people, their first association is the mbira -- a musical instrument that's also called a thumb piano. It's a flat piece of wood with metal keys that you pluck with your thumbs and index fingers.
The Shona people in Zimbabwe use the mbira not just to make people dance, but as a way of summoning and communicating with ancestral spirits. Shona make up the majority of the people of Zimbabwe, and this music is central to their lives. There are many people living in the United States who play mbira -- we tracked a couple of them down.
- Music Bridge:
- Artist: Erica Azim
- CD: Earth Healing (Relaxation)