Whether you are a long-time musician or just looking to try out a new tool, by now you’ve probably heard about the Djembe. This percussion instrument, originating from West Africa, is one of the most versatile hand-played drums. However, with all the different kinds and styles of Djembes available nowadays, how can you settle for only one?
#1. The shell
The outer region of the tool is traditionally made from hand-carved wood, even though there are several products available whose shell is made out of several synthetic materials. If you’re looking for authentic and louder sound, the wooden ones will be the perfect pick, although generally more expensive than those with synthetic shells.
#2. The skin
This is the very best portion of the instrument, where you actually playwith. It’s traditionally made of goatskin, although other types of animal skin may also be used to attain various depths and overtones. Like the shell, artificial skin is also widely available, with so-called”FiberSKin” being the most common amongst them.
#3. The mounting
This defines how the Djembe is assembled. It may be hard for a beginner to understand the different types of mounting systems but here’s a quick way to distinguish them:
• The conventional mounting means that the skin is held in place from the shell with a system of wooden pegs and it usually means your drum will have a lower pitch;
• The contemporary mounting, which is the main system used nowadays, uses a system composed of 3 unique rings. What does it mean for the participant? It usually leads to a higher pitch, although these instruments usually have a tuning system which allows the player to better control the pitch.
#4. Decorative elements
There are numerous different decorative elements in the Djembe, which range from ropes to the shape and height of the shell and even to colors. Here’s where you can be imaginative and find the Djembe that you like the most or customize it yourself.
With all this in mind, it can seem overwhelming to Select the Perfect Djembe, so here’s a listing of some of our top picks:
#1. Deco 79 89847 Wood Leather Djembe
This small yet beautiful instrument can be used both as a decorative element or as a musical instrument. With a wooden casing, rope detail and cow leather surface, you can attain the traditional Djembe sound while also having a gorgeous new thing to brighten up any room.
Size: 16″ Height and 9″ Width
Item weight: 1lbs
#2. Meinl Percussion HDJ3-M Black River Collection Headliner Rope Tuned Djembe
Moving onto a slightly bigger drum, the Meinl Percussion Djembe has its own unique style, featuring an all-black shell and rope, with white skin making it easier to grip between the knees. However, this tool doesn’t stray at all from other traditional-looking instruments, as the shell is hand carved from Mahogany and the skin used is the traditional goatskin. If you are looking for a non-traditional appearance but still desire the standard sound and high-quality of different Djembes, this is the drum to purchase. It can create high-pitched slaps to deep, resonant bass notes.
Size: 20″ tall & 10-Inch Diameter
Pre-stretched nylon tuning ropes
#3. X8 Drums Mini Djembe with Gecko Painted Design
This is the smallest drum in our list, yet among the most visually distinctive ones. Again, showcasing the traditional hand-carved Mahogany shell and goatskin top, this drum features a rope tuning system. The uniqueness of the instrument lies not just on its size, which is only around 7-inch tall but also on the intricate hand-painted elements on the casing, giving it a colorful and decorative appearance.
7-Inch tall & 5-Inch head
Weight: 14.4 oz
Hand painted by skilled artisans
#4. Meinl Percussion ADJ3-L 12-Inch Wood Djembe
Once again, Meinl Percussion provides us a great drum, that simply had to be included on our list. Offering all the same traditional features as the previously mentioned Meinl tool, the ADJ3 also showcases an intricate yet amazing system of blue ropes, which makes it one of the most stunning instruments on the list. And you can take it with you everywhere you go as it comes with its very own personalized bag.
Tuning by traditional Mali-Weave system with pre-stretched HTP nylon rope
Bag is included to permit easy transportation
Weight: 15.4 lbs
#5. Remo Djembe, MONDO (TM)
Onto our first synthetic Djembe! Made up of both synthetic shell, Acousticon, and artificial skin, Fiberskyn, this drum is one of the most sought-after synthetic drums on the market for one clear reason: its quality. Its durable exterior also means it’s less likely to break if misused by a beginner or awkward user. Although not built using traditional materials, the noise it generates speaks volume with lovely hi-end smack and low-end roar.
Size:14″ x 25″
Weight: 10 pounds
Contour Tuning Brackets
#6. Africa Heartwood Project Hand-carved Djembe
This is as traditional as it gets. If you’re wanting to go the extra mile and get a Djembe as conventional as possible, you have just found it! This beautiful instrument built using all of the standard elements you would find in an authentic Djembe is handmade by cultural artisans in Africa and part of the non-profit Africa Heartwood Project. If you want a excellent tool and help someone else in the world, don’t even hesitate.
Weight: 2.9 lbs
Hand-carved with approx size of 7-8″ X 14-16″
Appropriate for beginners and children
Authentic and traditional design
Manufactured in Ghana
#7. REMO Apex Djembe
If you’re interested in a drum which will easily be tuned, light and with unique appearance and sound, this is the one! It contains a unique tuning system that will keep your instrument tuned far longer than other conventional Djembes. It’s constructed of synthetic materials, even though it comes with a simple yet elegant black casing. If you are looking for durability and high-quality audio, this drum won’t disappoint.
Size: 12″ x 22″
Weight: 10 pounds
#8. Toca SFDJ-10K Freestyle Djembe
The last drum on our list is in no way worse than the others. With its goatskin top yet distinctive Kente Cloth design, you can expect to have the best of both worlds: traditional sound and appearance with contemporary standards of durability. Additionally, it features a system of ropes for tuning the instrument to your liking. This is an excellent pick for beginners and for those looking for an instrument that can also be used as a decorative element. It produces excellent bass tones and highs.
Size: 20″ tall & 10″ mind
Weight: 5.1 lbs
Unique Kente Cloth design end
Lighweight and durable