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See also: djembé


A street musician playing a djembe in Mexico City, 2010
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Alternative forms[edit]


From French djembé, from Mandinka jembe.



djembe (plural djembes)

  1. (music) A large, skin-covered drum played with the hands, used in West African and some fusion music.
    • 2007, Karin Gaynell Patterson, Expressions of Africa in Los Angeles Public Performance, 1781—1994[1], page 133:
      There are three principal types of traditional drums in Guinean Sousou culture: the djembe, the dundun, and the tama. The djembe is a single-headed goblet-shaped drum with a relatively high-pitched tone.
    • 2009, Tamara Dean, Composition for Computer Musicians[2], page 51:
      The djembe is one of the best—known and popular African drums, particular with those in the West who are interested in learning a drumming tradition.
    • 2010, Randy Raine-Reusch, Play the World: The 101 World Instrument Primer[3], page 91:
      The djembe has become the most recognizable drum from West Africa, with a history that can be traced to the twelfth century Mali Empire and the Mandinka people.
    • 2012, Michi Henning, Djembe Construction: A Comprehensive Guide, page 13,
      Very few djembes are perfectly round. Most are slightly egg- or triangle-shaped. Lack of roundness is not a problem for sound: many such djembes sound excellent.