Kalimba Rain

A kalimba played in an aleatoric plucking style....

The story

Aleatoric Kalimba plucks…

This is my Kalimba. It has sat in our house looking ornamental for decades, first in New York, then London and now here in Glasgow with me, gifted to me when I moved out.

I decided to sample it while I was writing music for a new dance piece but I wanted to make something a bit different. I’ve always been outdoors whenever possible and one of my favourite sounds is rain, and I found that the ‘plop’ like sound of the Kalimba has a wonderful watery quality. Fast forward a few hours and the rather pretentiously named “Kalimba Rain” was born! I think it’s seriously beautiful. And could be a perfect compliment to Percussion Swarm… I’ve included an in action video with my submission.

I recorded the same note multiple times with each track solo’d to give it as aleatoric a sound as possible, then panned them far left and right. As you add more and more notes, the sound swells and becomes a sea of ‘plops’.

This EXS instrument is completely dry, so grab your favourite reverb and get, err, plopping…


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