History of Djembe Drum
Djembe History & Playing Styles
The Djembe is named from the Djem tree, which is largely found in Mali was used
originally used in the making of Djembe shells. The
In the Djembe creation process the shell would be carved in one piece, in
the shape of a goblet, with two open ends out of a significant section of a Djem
tree. On the larger open end a animal (typically Goat) skin was then
stretched the top and secured by a special tightening process using rope.
The process hasn't changed too much today, except many djembes, such as the
LP Djembes use lugs rather than rope for tightening. Nonetheless, more
traditional rope tuned Djembes
are still popular and are outstanding instruments.
The traditional African way to play the Djembe is by standing. A should
harness strap helps support the drum and the lower portion of the drum rests
between the legs. Sometimes the strap is even wrapped around the
players waist. Both hands are used to play the Djembe but the legs are
also important for balancing and controlling the instrument. The
Djembe is played in countries around the globe now. It is also common to
play Djembe while sitting down. The players legs wrap around or 'hug' the
shell for control but the should harness is not typically used or necessary for
the sitting position.
The Djembe produces a range of percussive sounds. This enables the Djembe
to be used effectively as a bass drum or solo instrument. It may have the
widest range of tones of all hand drums. Its healing power is complimented
by it's power to make people dance. Both it's healing and dancing powers
are admired and practiced by drummers from Africa and around the globe.
Drum History - History of Djembe & playing styles
History of Drums & Percussion Instruments