For Sale: West African Talking Drum

For a low price of $99.99!

History and Culture

  • The talking drum is a West African Hourglass drum whose pitch can be regulated to mimic the tone and prosody of human speech
  • Hourglass shaped talking drums are some of the oldest instruments used by West African griots and their history can be traced back to the Ghana Empire. The Hausa people developed a highly sophisticated genre of griot music centering on the talking drum. This spread to many other West African civilizations and many variants of the talking drum were created, with essentially the same construction
  • Talking drums were a form of communication between the Africans and were a large part of their culture. Detailed messages could be sent from one village to the next faster than could be carried by a person riding a horse.


  • The general shape and size of the Talking Drum is shown to the left, as many variations existed but they all took this form and shape
  • The Tama of the Wolof and Mandinka peoples is typified by its smaller dimensions, having a total drum length typical of 5 inches with a 2.75 inch drum head diameter. This produces a much higher pitched tone than other talking drums of the same construction.
  • The Yoruba and Dagomba peoples on the other hand have some of the largest dimensions for drums in their Lunna and Dùndún ensembles, with a length typical of 9 to 15 inches and a drum head diameter of between 10 and 18 centimeters.

Comparing the Talking Drum

  • You can compare the use of talking drums with other uses of music in West Africa. Many forms of music in West Africa were to preserve their history through oral tradition as well as performing ceremonies to honor or celebrate. All of their forms are interconnected because they all relate to preserving and protruding their unique culture.
  • The talking drum can also be related to the role of the griot or jeli. A griot or jeli is a West African historian, storyteller, praise singer, poet or musician. They used musical instruments in all kinds of ways to describe oral traditions to preserve their histories and to spread messages between villages. This is exactly what the Talking drum did, and many griots were known to use these drums.
  • The talking drum can finally be related to modern-day technology for communication. Some examples of modern day technologies are cell phones, computers, planes, and cars, all of which can be used for spreading messages and communicating with others. Back in Ancient Africa, they were able to spread word through music, which was likely a very outstanding innovation for the time period.

Why do you want to buy this product?

  • Overall, the talking drum was a very unique part of African culture and it was used to keep history alive and spread word to other tribes. We may overlook it as nowadays we have newer technology, but we must always remember the important and extreme technological advances this piece of art gave the African societies back in the day.
  • So you should buy this beautiful piece of art at the low price we are offering. Many may ask why the price we offer is so low in worry, and to that we answer that we are not trying to make a huge profit, but instead we want to spread the history and culture of many forgotten civilizations. So please help us in doing so by buying this wonderful drum
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For sale now for $99.99! A product this elegant should be twice the price!


If you order now, we will ship with you a free guide and video of how to perfect the use of the art!

Don't wait to get this unique and beautiful sounding instrument! Impress all of your neighbors and friends!

Sun Valley Antiques

We sell antique musical and art instruments used in European, African, and Asian societies