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Downbeat Magazine Toca Freestyle Djembe Review
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In the August issue of Downbeat magazine you'll find a great review of the new Toca Freestyle Djembes in Antique Gold and Silver. Below, we have included a copy of the piece as well as a transcription.
Toca Freestyle Djembe: Full-Bodied Satisfaction
Toca Percussion has retooled its award-winning Freestyle djembe - a chaliced-shaped, single-headed hand drum with roots in the West African countries of Guinea and Mali.
Instead of employing the traditional method of carving the instrument from the trunk of a tree, Toca uses a patented shell made from synthetic PVC material for these djembes. This makes the Freestyle djembe amongst the lightest and the most durable models on the market. The PVC shell produces a bright resonance that allows for easy tone production and makes the drum an excellent choice for school programs and drum circles.
Toca puts hand-selected goat skin heads on the Freestyle djembes, providing an important organic element often lacking in all-synthetic models. The skins on the four djembes I played all had excellent quality heads with even thickness and no blemishes.
The new Freestyle djembes feature a low mass bold tuning system, unlike traditional djembes that use a somewhat complex rope tuning system. The Freestyle djembes are easily tuned with a small wrench that comes with the drums. The tuning mechanism provides for quick, practically effortless tuning of a wide range of tensions. The bolts on the Freestyle djembes have protective rubber sleeves on them, which protect the player's legs and enhance the look of the drum. A non-slip protective rubber collar is located on the bottom of the instruments.
The new Freestyle djembes are available in two new hand-painted finishes - antique gold and antique silver - to give them a distinctive, North African look. They come with a choice of four different head sizes: 9-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch and 14-inch. The heights of the drums are relative to the head sizes, making the 12-inch and 14-inch more of a traditional djembe size and the smaller drums are musch like a North African dumbek. All sizes produce full-bodied sounds with sharp high-end slaps and satisfying bass tones. - Doug Brush
In addition to the Freestyle Djembes, Toca also offers a line of Freestyle Didgeridoo instruments.
High Tuned "Dandaranyika" Kalimba
Meinl African Talking Drum
Meinl Foot Tambourine
X8 Drums Heavy Duty Cajon Bag
Double Row Round Tambourine with Goatskin Head
Mavembe Tuned Mbira #1
Gretsch New Classic Series Drum Set, Black Sparkle