Forums > Social Chat > Please Help! What should I be looking for in a Djembe?

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Rain
member
Location: Melbourne,Vic. Aust.
Member Since: 14th Dec 2000
Total posts: 69
Posted:Hi, Just wondering about what I should be looking for in a good quality Djembe? I was wondering what things a good Djembe should have and what things it shouldn't. I am looking at spending 400-500 Australian Dollars (US $200-250) is it possible to get a good drum for this? In paricular I want to know what are the signs of a good quality drum and the signs that a drum is of poor quality.Thanks in advance. Rain

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Posted:You will defintely get a good drum for that (unless you get ripped off)I think you can go either of two ways...either get a really high quality massproduced drum, or get a handmade drum. I tend to think the massproduced drums are better cuz they usually have standard skin tensioning screws, instead of fiddly knots and stuff (headache if you want to replace the skin). They are more easily tuned but dont have the hippy image (no soul I guess).Athough - I've never seen a pro djembe player who used a mass produced drum
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I bought a plastic (shock horror) djembe from rungodrums, and am quite happy with it. no wood so I can go travelling with it, without having customs go nuts everytime I bring it into a country. It was $250, and rungo is based in Vic.but seriously man, listen to the drums - if you dont know what you are looking for, try to find someone who does...its a lot of money, and as you improve, you will probly feel better about spending it if you get a drum that is able to go where you want it to.Also - remember to get lessons. I've just jammed away on mine, and I've gotten to a level where I dont feel I'm advancing anymore. It kinda gets boring playing the same rythms all the time
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Best of luck,Josh


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Rain
member
Location: Melbourne,Vic. Aust.
Member Since: 14th Dec 2000
Total posts: 69
Posted:Thanks Josh,I have done the ring around and found that a friend of a friend knows about them and infact makes them. So I will have a talk to him about it.I hadn't thought about the fact that wood could cause a problem when traveling. Is it only a problem when you are traveling overseas or is it also a problem when going interstate? Thanks again. Rain.

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Posted:Its only an international thing.Best of luck
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Josh


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Available
member
Location: ringwood,nj usa
Member Since: 18th Aug 2001
Total posts: 93
Posted:search the net cause you can take a class on making your own drum with highly qualified crafts people who in and out know the art of drum and what you made your own drum?!search for: drum craft, drum craft education, drum festivalthere are a # of places and events that offer such workshops normally drumming workshops are included for the $ you want to spin you can deffinately do thisSTURT is a school in nsw i've been thinking of going to and maybe they know of other workshop places that offer such a class best of lucksara

Better to Burn out than Fade out, Baby!

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Kelt
member
Location: Dayton, OH USA
Member Since: 8th Sep 2001
Total posts: 34
Posted:Ideally, you'll run across an independent vendor that either makes their own or gets them from someone who does. I tend to see them at wierdo pagan/hippie festivals.Then, just play 'em. See which one has the sound that you like. Be sure to try all the areas of the head, and be sure to test using a doom, slap, and rim.$200-$300 US? Great drum - EASY.

Let me stand next to yourFire, fire on the mountain...

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Stone
Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne
Member Since: 13th Jun 2001
Total posts: 2830
Posted:Hi Rain, how are the Elthan spinners going?I don't know a lot about djembe drums and I carn't drum for shit, but here goes. The best thing about djembes is their bass sound (centre), so hit a few and find a sound you like. For wood drums, tip the drum upside down and see how it was made. The really good ones are probable a one piece construction. Check the wood for cracks and repairs. Check the skin. New skins are over A$100 and you have to soak them before you put them on. What to buy? I have to agree with Josh. I was infatuated with hand carved drums, but a plastic A$220 drum would be the best place to start. There is a drum shop in Johnson St, just down from the Laundry (spin dry) and another in Smith St. There are also a few people making drums in Vic, so you may see some at markets and such. I was going to buy a djembe, but I may go for a smaller drum (dont know what they are called) that you see around a lot. They make a great sound and are a lot easier to lug around. Congas sound great, but they take a fair bit of tuneing and require a different style. They are definately a pain to transport, but you can often pick them up cheep, cause people go WOW congas gotta have em, then they get sick of them and flog them off, sometines for less than A$500.Good Luck
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If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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xLessThanJakex
member
Location: Reading, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2001
Total posts: 155
Posted:Hi,I've played djembe for the last three years and now run a drum circle so I've bought and heard lots of drums in that time. Some of the best ones have come from www.NOVICA.com (go to the West Africa section and look under musical instruments). They are a fair trade craft company that cuts out the middle man by dealing directly with drum makers in Ghana. I was nervous about buying a drum without trying it out first but after I got the first one I was so pleased with it I've since bought eight or nine and they've all been excellent. The sound is great, sharp slap and all that, thick rope, solid wood. Including postage, I paid around 100 (GBP). I'm just about to get a drum from another company I found on the net (www.senegalstyle.com I think) - they're drums LOOK fantastic but I can't vouch for how they sound yet. Good luck with the search, hope you get what you're looking for :-)------------------Where there is sorrow I seek the Flame - Rumi

Where there is sorrow I seek the Flame - Rumi

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Rain
member
Location: Melbourne,Vic. Aust.
Member Since: 14th Dec 2000
Total posts: 69
Posted:Thanks guys, I met up with a guy the other nite that has an awesome drum for sale and I am still contemplating if it is the one for me. I will let you know. Rain.

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Rouge Dragon
Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction
Member Since: 21st Jul 2003
Total posts: 13215
Posted:Right. Now that HoP has djembes and I want to buy one; I'm bumping this thread to see if there's anyone out there who wants to add anything!

I know absolutely squat about djembes and the HoP shop gives me choices I don't know how to make! ubblol

(sorry Malcolm if I have just bumped a thread that advertises other sellers of something you now sell, but was a bit of a damned if i do, damned if i dont. "don't" being staring a thread about something that already existed! Feel free to slap me over the wrist.)


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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