Instrument: Hand Drum


The djembe is a goblet drum made in North Africa or the Middle East out of clay, wood or metal. The head of the drum (or skin) is usually made from animal skins, but today is commonly made with thin plastic which gives it a solid "smack" sound. When struck it produces a sharp sound with deep bass tones.

These drums are available in different models and sizes with the skins attached in different ways for tuning. To tune the djembe you need to tighten the head 'til you get the desired "pop" sound. Lots of smackin' stretches the skins, changing the sound and pitch of the drum. They are also available in funky patterns and ethnic painted designs.

If you would rather groove standing up you can attach a strap to make it portable. Djembes are available at larger music stores ranging in price depending on size, make and origin. These popular drums are a favorite used by many musicians. To learn more about the djembe and begin your own lessons, sign up at

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