Image via Wikipedia The marimba, a deep-toned xylophone, is the national instrument of Costa Rica. It came to this country by way of Africa. The name marimba is actually a Bantu word meaning “wood that sings”. The problem is that the marimba is dying out. Antonio Ortiz, a Tico, is trying to keep the art alive. He makes marimbas by hand. It takes him three months to make a marimba. The US seems more interested in buying his marimbas than his own country. Ortiz says that a lot of the old men who used to play marimbas at parties and celebrations are not around any more. He calls the marimba “the piano of Central America.” Ortiz will keep trying to save the marimba tradition, but he worries whether he is already too late.