The Rattletree School of Marimba

Play music with your friends…
In less time than it takes to eat a taco!
Join Today!

Make Music and Friends!

“If You Can Walk, You Can Dance.  If You Can Talk You Can Sing!”
- Zimbabwean Proverb

We strongly believe that music is meant to be played in community.  One of the magical things about marimba music is that people with little to no musical background can easily learn to play a song alongside seasoned musicians within about 5 minutes.

Each class is taught in a band format, where everyone gets to try out the different size marimbas, make new friends, and instantly be a part of a thriving community.

A Welcoming Community

We love to celebrate making music together!  There is a place for everyone in our classes-from complete beginners to professional musicians!

Not in Austin? Learn Online!

We offer online lessons for those wanting to study remotely.  Currently, we have lessons in mbira, matepe, and guitar.  More coming soon!

Have our music at your event!

We have bands available for many different types of events-Everything from large festivals to small galas and private events.  Let’s do it!

I have no musical talents whatsoever, except air guitar and car singing.  I warned Joel.  He laughed and guaranteed that within five minutes I would be playing the Marimba.  Guess what.  He was right.  He and Rakefet were so patient and encouraging to all of us.



Joel Laviolette is a dedicated musician, a patient and giving teacher, and a world-class craftsman. I have been to and hosted several educational events by Joel and Rattletree. It is an experience not to be missed!!

John Lane

Professor of Music , Sam Houston State University

Joel is an incredible teacher for both beginners and advanced players.
What is so cool about playing marimba is that you need no skill, just a willingness to jump in and play.

Anna Marie


The Rattletree School of Marimba is a recipient of the Capacity Building Program from the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department.