Basic Steps to Djembe Drum Maintenance

By Ruth Williams

You put thought and effort into finding the right djembe for your needs. Now that you have your djembe drum you need to ensure that you look after it so it performs well and lasts a long time. Along with regular maintenance and a djembe bag, your drum should lasts for many years.

Your drum will need to be stored somewhere when it's not in use so it does not get unnecessarily damaged. To preserve the longevity of the skin, it is helpful to detune the djembe when it is not in regular use. By detuning the drum it gives the skin a break and will extend its life. It may also extend the life of the drum head itself as much as fifty percent.

It is also necessary to rubdown the drum skin occasionally. Rubbing the skin with a light coating of oil or lotion will rehydrate it a little. This treatment will keep your djembe looking good and more importantly, sounding good. You may wish to test a small amount of the oil or lotion on a hidden portion of the skin to make sure no undesirable discolouration occurs. This type of care is only beneficial to djembes with natural skins.

Djembes should only be stored where it is dry and cool. Sun can really damage the skin on a drum, making it dry and brittle. Excess moisture will cause your drum to go mouldy or rot. A mouldy drum can be unpleasant and certainly won't go unnoticed when you take your drum to your drumming group.

A djembe bag is an additional investment that is well worth the cost. You can either opt for a thin, light weight bag or a fitted, padded bag, the latter will obviously provide greater protection. While settling your drum into the passenger seat and belting it in may have a similar effect, it may scratch the body and looks less professional. To provide the most protection the drum should fit snuggly in the djembe bag. A bag that is too large will not offer the proper protection, and a bag that is too small may only fit your tennis racquet or cat.

You should get into the habit of looking after your djembe. If you look after your djembe it will be with you for many years to come.

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