Über den Verlag

Klaus-Peter Brenner (Hrsg.)
Mbira Music | Musics
Structures and Processes.

2019, 367 S., Paperback
Reihe: Göttingen Studies in Musicology/Göttinger Studien zur Musikwissenschaft, 9
ISBN: 978-3-487-15842-6

44,00 EUR
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Mbira Music | Musics. Structures and Processes presents a collection of special studies focussing
on some of the many typologically and genetically interrelated lamellophones and
the respective web of musical idioms and »dialects« whose historically dynamic distribution
covers the vast south-central African area of what are now the Shona-speaking parts of
Zimbabwe and adjacent areas in Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, and South Africa.
Besides deepening specific aspects of and exploring amazing new developments branching
out from the already well-documented Zezuru mbira dzavadzimu and the Kwanongoma
College’s, now widespread, schools version of the karimba, these studies also
highlight some of the previously underrepresented members of the south-central African
lamellophone family such as the Tonga kankobela, the Lala kankobele, the Korekore and
Sena-Nyungwe matepe, and the particularly variable and idiosyncratic Ndau mbira dza-
Special emphasis is laid on in-depth analyses of the intricately systemic nexus between
their organology, their playing techniques and the cognitive dimension, aesthetics, function
and symbolism of their respective musical repertoires, as well as on the »biology«
of those repertoires as embodied knowledge transmitted aurally/visually within dynamic
networks of players.
Significant recent innovations which are analyzed here include the extension, hybridization
and triple-combination of different tuning plans into a single large-ambitus solo
instrument, the emergence of, again large-ambitus, »mbira orchestras« created by means
of a staggered extension and modally shifted reorganization of the traditional ensemble
structure and musical material (however, at the cost of blurring the identity of individual
pieces and undermining their religious function), as well as perhaps the utmost possible
extension of improvisational spaces within the otherwise unchallenged grammatical
framework of an individual mbira piece.
The present volume pools contributions of fourteen African, American and European
scholars and musicians from Zimbabwe, South Africa, the United States, the Netherlands,
Austria and Germany. An extensive collection of audio, video and graphic companion material
is provided online. The editor is a lecturer at the Department of Musicology and the
curator of the Collection of Musical Instruments at the University of Göttingen, Germany.