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Kalimba master Kevin Spears has become a familiar and beloved figure at the White Horse Black Mountain through “Masters of the Moment”, an innovative concert series that pairs Spears with various collaborators in an atmosphere that encourages improvisation and exploration.

Spoken word and song become part of the mix as Spears hosts Asheville’s Larry and Linda Cammarata at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 18 for a journey into sacred poetry, dynamic soundscapes and positive vibes.

In the hands of Spears the ancient African thumb piano, also known in its modern form as a kalimba, becomes an orchestra in miniature. He coaxes complex rhythms and melodies from the instrument, enhancing its natural voice with digital loops and effects that allow him to build layers of percussive and harmonic sound.

His compositions range from gentle and meditative to funk workouts that would make Stevie Wonder proud, but a penchant for spontaneous creation also runs through his work. Spears’ virtuosity and musical fearlessness certainly rank him as one of the best kalimba players in the world.

Larry and Linda are mind-body wellness practitioners who are intensely attuned to the healing properties of sound. Larry is accomplished on many world instruments, including ethnic flutes, hand percussion and didgeridoo. Linda has been singing since the age of five, and her improvisational vocals are a vehicle for contemplation of life’s mysteries. She and Larry weave together their music and ancient poetry in a conscious message of peace and hope.

They’ve performed nationwide, including at Deepak Chopra’s conference in Los Angeles.

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