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Ringing Djembe

Posted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:54 am
by Pabluefox
Hi. I purchased a new djembe Djala wood with natural goatskin head. It sounds like it has a ring whenever I strike a base tone much like a synthetic head wood. What can I do? Thanks for any insight.

Re: Ringing Djembe

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2016 11:28 am
by korman
Did you try it before buying? Can you return it for another one?

Maybe the skin is too thin, maybe the it has not been properly fitted, maybe the inside of shell is not properly done, there can be numerous causes to ringing problem, it is impossible to tell without seeing the drum and hearing its sound. I'm sorry, but there might not be easy solution to this.

Drum can be reskinned, bearing edge straightened, but all these things require intervention by a skilled artisan (or you need to research and learn drumbuilding yourself). So if you don't like the sound, exchange it for another one, if possible.

Re: Ringing Djembe

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:50 pm
by michi
Or just keep tuning. Usually, as you increase tension, the ringing goes down. Tune high enough, and you'll probably end up with a really dry sound. That, or a broken skin. Live is too short to play a drum that doesn't sound right… ;)


Re: Ringing Djembe

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2016 3:40 pm
by drtom
It's true that any number of things can cause the ringing in your djembe, but I'd be willing to bet it's simply out of tune. The fact that the bass rings tells me this.

Only the very best drum makers crank their djembes up to playing pitch before they're sold. Most drum makers (who tend to mass produce them) leave the skins relatively loose out of fear that they will split. This is true of big name companies like Remo, LP and Meinl, but also true of smaller drum makers out of Africa, especially from Ghana.