KUUNGANA – ABOUT US
Our band joins together to play both traditional and contemporary African songs on marimba, mbira, drums and voices. Teenagers and adults join together to play this joyful music. Kuungana itself is a Swahili word that means to connect or join.
This lively, danceable music will get your feet tapping and your hips swaying in time to the complex, enticing rhythms. Listeners often call this “happy music” and people of all ages respond to it with enthusiasm and delight.
We in the band play this amazing music for the joy it brings to us and to the audience. The lead marimba carries the musical storyline, the other marimbas carry the melodic patterns that weave through the song, and the traditional “hosho”, or gourd rattles, hold the driving beat. It all comes together in a tapestry of music guaranteed to get you out of your seat and onto the dance floor.
Our band consists of three veterans of the now retired Juba Marimba- Bellingham’s premier marimba band (Deb, John and Tedd), one veterans of Kuva Rhythm Project, three veterans of Bellingham’s youth marimba bands (Adrienne, Jesse and Rachel) and our newest member who has come from a Seattle marimba band Nyamuziwa.
We happily share our music through performances, parties, gatherings, fairs, benefits and school workshops. ENJOY!
Instrument and space needs: Marimbas are large instruments. We do need a stage with space that is at least 15X18 feet, preferably against a wall or other backdrop. If indoors, the room needs to be large enough that the instruments do not overpower it. and there needs to be plenty of space for folks to DANCE!! We sometimes play with a sound system and will need an electrical feed for this.