Baba Marimba. (Credit: Kathleen Dreier Photography)

Tuesday July 30, 2019, 11:30 am-12:30 pm

The Arizona Senior Academy Building

The irresistible rhythms of world beat music come your way as Baba Marimba returns to the Arizona Senior Academy. As the band plays, you will enjoy colorful sounds coursing through your body. Their music incorporates styles from different parts of the world – Africa, the Americas, the Middle East, Europe and beyond. They play dance music, ballads, tango, rumba and more, and their instrumentation includes kalimba, mbira, marimba, harp and electric viola together with African drums and jazz percussion. While most of their songs are originals, they play covers as well, featuring unique arrangements all their own, with soaring solos and joyous melodies and harmonies.

Since their last ASA appearance, Baba Marimba has been on an upward trajectory, expanding to a 7-member band with the addition of new members, Joe Townend on bass and vocals, Andrea Gudrune on viola, guitar, harp and vocals, and Martin Tiernan playing “great grooves” on drums.

Among the original members, the brass players include Heidi Wilson on alto sax and Mike Ankomeous on trumpet. Wilson is a composer as well as tai chi instructor and healing arts practitioner. Ankomeous is an educator, dedicated to public service and community development. Mark Holdaway is a master kalimba player who also plays guitar and marimba. Percussionist/marimba player “Swami” Robert Peizer was taught African drumming as well as dance by musicians from the Middle East, Guiinea, the Congo and Trinidad.

Baba Marimba’s CD, “Tango de los Muertos,” is available through their website, 

Written by Leslie Nitzberg, Academy Village Volunteer

July 30: “Baba Marimba: World Beat Music”