Type: Idiophones > Lamellaphones > Combs.
Hornbostel Sachs No#: 122.1
Country: Cuba, Many.
Region: Caribbean & Latin America.
Description: The marímbula [Spanish pronunciation: maˈɾimbula] is a plucked box musical instrument assigned to the plucked lamellaphone subcategory of idiophones. In Cuba it is common in the changüí genre, as well as old styles of son.
In Mexico, where it is known as marimbol is played in son jarocho; in the Dominican Republic, where it is known as marimba, it is played in merengue típico, and in Jamaica it is known as rumba box or church-slap and played in mento.
Playing Technique: Unlike typical African lamellaphones, such as the mbira, used to produce complex polyphony and polyrhythms, the marimbula usually plays the role of a upright bass or bass guitar providing the rhythmic and harmonic support for an ensemble, although it can produce a simple melody as well.