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By the kid
Wula has nice drums for 600. The lenge ivory coast drum for 650 looks a bit of a peach. It is gonna be good no matter what wood you choose at that level. Where you are based might lead people to suggesting different shops to buy at.

Drumskulls , wooden roots are other shops in the states ... -4607-djhl
Note this drum has a repair and why it is reduced.
What are you playing now?

I recommend playing them in person, but if you can't visit one of the top stores (Wooden Roots in LA, Drumskull Drums in Santa Cruz, and Wula in New York all come to mind) then I'd recommend listening to videos online to get an idea of what different woods and sizes sound like.
Last edited by batadunbata on Mon Sep 11, 2017 5:55 am, edited 3 times in total.
thanks guys, the cassia wood djembe at wooden roots looks kool. someone recommended that to me. i have been playing for about 10 years, not that im that good. but its time to buy a djembe and i only need one
IMO Cassia's the most gorgeous wood (generally speaking), and that one's a real beaut.

Since you mentioned Hare and Djalla, is that because you like the sound or the look?

As for looks, you can't do better. Hare can look amazing too, but it varies a lot.

I had a link to a video of a cassia djembe, but the uploader switched it to private. (not sure why, hope it wasn't dut to my link) There's one on youtube if you search for cassia djembe it'll come up, Namady Keita plays it. Sounds great. Somewhat similar to Djalla and Lenke imo, but a little different.
Last edited by batadunbata on Mon Sep 11, 2017 5:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
You can check also this european shop, located in Berlin: ... anguage=en

You'll get very nice djembe for around 500- 550 USD, shipping costs to USA included. I buy djembe suplies there regularly and can guarantee for them. Bought also hare djembe shell from them and can only say that it is top notch quality. They sell mostly guinean style djembes. Some of the djembes in gallery have also audio video demo.
batadunbata wrote:What are you playing now?

I recommend playing them in person, but if you can't visit one of the top stores (Wula:New York, Drumskulls:Santa Cruz CA, Wooden Roots:LA) then I'd recommend buying from Drumskulls or Wula, selecting from drums which have a demo video online (some but not most do).

I believe DS and WR both stock Wula shells (Guinean) as well as shells from other sources, Mali, etc.
Wula set the standard for interior finish and skillful carving of the soundhole area.
drumskull drums does not stock Wula shells.
dsd vs wula is an age old debate. my observations Comparing wula special piece vs dsd premier. Certainly the below comparison are 100% subjective, while I have met both Matt Hardwick and Michael Markus, i have no affiliation to either.

also, my observations are in general terms looking at the drums as a whole, their may be one offs that go beyond my observations

1. Wula djembes are fully mounted in Guinea vs DSD shells are imported and then reworked and mounted by Matt and his team here. (i.e. fine sanding, oiling etc..).

2. there are certain cosmetic traits that are unique to wula or unique to dsd.
-rubber bottom, wula will be a tacked bottom material vs dsd will be 1/2" glued rubber bottom
-while both utilize tackwork, dsd are more often patterned at the bottom vs wulas are normally dispersed thru carving
-both feature the nice trimmed cuff look, but dsd will offer a short cut (non cuff) option on premier line whereas wula special pieces are typically only fur cuff
-rope: dsd offers wider variery of patterned rope than Wula, tho recently wula has been introducing more drums with rope other than black.
-rope used by both is poly with a poly core, tho wula poly core is woven and dsd poly core is not. wula is asvertised as 5.5mm and dsd is at 5mm. having used both i havent noticed huge differences in performance.
-hitches: dsd offers extended hitches or a double laced bittom hitch in different colors which wula does not, wulas typically are run with standard hitches in black
-rings: dsd has a few options including the shiny stainless rings or the powder colored rings.
-carving styles, in my opinion wula djembes are more ornate on design than dsds. (on avg).
-sometimes premier line drums will have a rope wrap which is not offered by Wula.

3. Skins-- both appear to use high quality attractive goat skins in general. dsd offers premier line in calf which is not as common with wula special pieces

4. Price. Wula tiers their special piece options (SP1, SP2, SP3, SP4) based on the amount of carving in drum, SP1s include carves top bowls which dsd typically will not (infrequently theyll show up in dsd). they vary the pricing on these, vs dsd ive found the premier line pricing to have less variation across different levels of carving. in general if you wait for right time ive found you can get good deals on wula via sales, coupons or bargain deals for blemishes. also, wula now offers free shipping where dsd does not.

5. lastly, country of origin. Wula offers Guinea djembes exclusively where DSD offers djembes from mostly Guinea and Ivory Coast right now, but their was a time years ago where Mali and Senegal djembes were frequently on the website
"drumskull drums does not stock Wula shells"

I trust that you know, being from the same town as DS :)
Perhaps I mistook the post I saw.
Maybe it said Wula are from Guinea and DS are from Guinea and Mali.
But as I recall, it said DS uses Wula shells as well as shells from Mali.
If so, it's possible the post was from a long time ago and they have different sources now.

I feel bad for posting misinfo and will edit the post, thanks for catching that and mentioning it.
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By the kid
There was a certain level of rivalary between the companies when they posted on the same thread. Don't think they sharing product.

instrument-building-and-repair-f3/guine ... t2407.html

Another discussion happened over the tacked versus glued rubber bottom. That got heated but i though wula was in the wrong really as they stated a tack does not produce cracks in a shell. Tell that to my old Djalla. It would be nice if tacks didn't affect wood but they do.
I like the look of the cassia, hare and djalla, i think they are beautiful. I do not know how they differ as to sound. How does that work? what do the different woods, in general, sound like.

There used to be a smaller company that made mali shells, it was like roots or rooty or somethign... the guy posted here. any idea what that was?