Wenda Kanawa is a level 1 piece.
The Tshokwe (also the Satshokwe, Badjok, Kiokos and the like) inhabit the savannas in Northeast Angola in the province of Shaba. The families live as hunters, fishermen and farmers under the leadership of an elder, or mwata. Political borders officially separate groups and even families of the same origin, but such artificial boundaries hardly matter as there has been continuing contact for both sides.
To their neighbors—the Pende, Lunda and Lwena—the Tshokwe are famous for their skills as carvers and for their great festival dances: tshiyanda and tshisela. The entire community shares in musical events as singers, dancers, and instrumentalists. There are many occasions in the life of the Tshokwe family, and often dances and songs for these are carefully proscribed by tradition.
Apart from the festival dances, which are accompanied by drum orchestra, there is solo music. Playing the tshisaji mutshapata, the largest of the three lamellophones (sanzas) of the Tshokwe, require not only musical skill, but also technical talent of a high order. Soloists of the mallet keyboard instrument ndjimba have become very rare. Sakatanga Mwatshifi is one of the few who can still pass on his talents to pupils—in this case to his own sons.
The great xylophone Ndjimba has 17 bars and is played with two rubber sticks. Under each bar is mounted a hollow gourd to serve as amplifier.
The Mandara Music Gyil Transcription Series features some of the best-known pieces for this instrument.
U.S. Retail: $20.00
Available from Steve Weiss Music
P.O. Box 20885, Philadelphia PA 19141 USA
Phone: (215)-659-0100 Fax: (215)-659-1170