The Drum Doctor - Hand drum repair, maintenance and restoration

About The Drum Doctor

Rope-tuned, African djembe hand drum.

The Drum Doctor is a band of dedicated music enthusiasts with a very special emphasis on hand drums. We love drumming and can't wait to get you back at it!

Based in Santa Cruz, CA, we tend to be open minded and easy going, but please do not misunderstand; we do not lack passion.

We love hand drums!

African, Middle Eastern, Indian, Native American, Asian, South American - we love hand drums from every corner of the world and know that no instrument in the world can make hair stand at attention like a well- tuned djembe!

The Drum Doctor has a particular passion for making ailing drums whole again. Few things in life are more rewarding than restoring full voice to a muted djembe. We love to repair frame drums, and are eager to rehead tablas. We have years of experience repairing hand drums from all over the world.

The Drum Doctor's Mission

Whatever ills your instrument may be suffering, the prognosis is good. The Drum Dr. has taken this oath:

I will not abandon the care of a drum until she sounds better than new.

This is no idle promise; it is our mission.

It is unlikely that your beloved old hand drum was created with you in mind. It's more likely that she was born to a generic context, very possibly en masse. We will consult with you in order to determine your particular needs--and hers, and we will dedicate ourselves to fulfilling those needs.

When we are done with the repair of your hand drum, she will be one of a kind and she will sound better than new!

Read what some of our clients have to say about the work we do:

I highly recommend Dr. Tom for his exceptional work on hand drums. I've recommended him to students, drum circle participants and to fellow professional percussionists many times over the years, and he has always delivered top-notch work, always within the time frame he suggested, and always with a professional and upbeat attitude.

Thanks Doc for providing such a great service to the drumming community!

Jim Greiner

Oh Yeah. That Ashiko came out absolutely perfect. Looks great and sounds amazing as well. Flawless job! Thank You!

Anthony (Emporia, KS)

Great job Dr Tom! Thank you! I played the drum a little and . . . the sound is really superb and has tons of different tones. Again, thank you. My son will be very pleased when I can give him back his beloved drum better than new!

Brad Smith (Fairfield, CA)

I just want to say, you do beautiful work. From the way she sounds, now I realize she was never, ever tuned correctly before, I just never knew. She sounds amazing!! Thank you, thank you so very much. It's good to have her back, better than before. . . . Thanks again!!

LaVonne (Lake County, CA)

I picked up the drum today and it sounds and looks great - the bass is clear and I love the tone - you've turned it into a one-of-a-kind instrument. . . . Aloha!

Kevin (Honolulu, HI)

ITS PERFECT!!!!!!!!!

I am so thrilled. There is a whole symphony of tones I'm pulling out of there!

Can't stop playing it!

Animal Prufrock (San Francisco, CA)

Dr. Tom,

We received the doumbek yesterday.

Yes, mind blowing...

Haven't played this in years and it sounds great!

Whitehawk Sessions (New Mexico)

My djembe arrived safe and sound on Tuesday afternoon, and I have been testing its sounds in brief periods since then, greatly enjoying all the work that you did to improve it. No complaints whatsoever, only praises! The rope handle is a wonderful, unexpected addition, too. The whole drum is perfect for me now . . I love its sounds and vibrations . . .

Thank you again for taking such good care of my djembe. It's reassuring to know that you are there to help in the future as well. I'll gladly recommend you to other drummers . . .

Suzanne (San Francisco, CA)

Just got my! It is singing again! So fun.

Thanks Doc! and thanks for the speedy delivery :)

Sri Odom (Kensington, CA)

I've received the drum, and it looks and sounds amazing. Thanks again, I'll definitely be referring you to my friends.


Hi Dr. Tom. Thanks for the work on my tabla (Some months ago). It still hasn't gone out of tune!

Kevin Williams

I got the Ashiko back. Your're right . . . It looks great and sounds great! Fabulous job! Thanks!

Anthony (Emporia, KS)

Hi Tom,
Just wanted to let you know I received my drum safe and sound. Thank you so much! It's awesome! I love the handle you added to the back and it sounds even better than it did before. Thank you thank you thank you!!!


Alyssa Maxon (Stamford, CT)

Hello Tom!
I received the drum today and wow, it sure does look nice and sound great! I really appreciate the work! Thanks for everything!

Samuel Bennett

Hey Tom,
I forget if I let you know, but I got my drum last Friday. It looks and sounds great and I'm very excited to be playing again

Thank you so much,
Joshua Doucette

Thank you so much for fixing my djembe. It is so perfect now. Thank you so much!

Jeffrey Luna-Sparks (Director of Music at Jingle Jamboree Music)

Really nice work......

John Mealey

I was unable to find anyone in my area in NJ to repair my drum and then I found Dr. Tom! Even though he was across the country, I knew he was the right guy for the job... and I was right! I shipped my drum to Dr. Tom, we discussed the details on the phone and a few weeks later I got the drum back! It looks absolutely beautiful and sounds great! So happy!!

Thanks Dr. Tom :-)

Leslie Garabedian (Haledon, NJ)

Dr. Tom,

We received the ashiko today. We are playing the two drums together (We also repaired a doumbek); sounds amazing. Beautiful work, exactly what we asked for.

Whitehawk Sessions (New Mexico)

As I have examined and played my drum since I received it, I thought about . . . the concept of kaizen, continuous improvement. . . . The drum's tones are pure. The ropes are not twisted. The final trim of the skin is straight and matched to the curve of the rest of the head. There are no loose or ragged edges. It demonstrates the pride you take in your work. You are a real craftsman and artist who takes pride in his work. These are djembes that will be pounded by elementary school students, but they look like drums suited for professional musicians.

Alan Rheese (Ogden, UT)

The drum arrived today, and I just wanted to tell you how happy we are with your work. Thank you so much. My husband is thrilled!

Stephanie Newsom (Redwood City, CA)

I got the drum back today -it sounds better than ever! Thanks so much for your help.

Fred Taylor (Mukilteo, WA)

Greetings Dr. Tom!

Yes, the drum arrived safely and it is absolutely beautiful and powerful. I was brought to tears when we opened it. . .

Much gratitude and blessings,
Traci Ireland (Ketchum, ID)

Received tabla today - Excellent job - it sounds great!

Elizabeth Kerr (Front Range Community College)

Dr. Tom,

I received my drum yesterday, It's perfect!! Thank you Thank you Thank you!!

My drum is happy as am I.

All the best to you,
Nada (New York)

Hi Dr. Tom:

Thanks so much for fixing my drum. It just returned home in the mail today and looks and sounds great.

Barbara Price (Lewisburg, PA)

Dear Dr. Tom,

My riqq now sounds terrific, feels great in the hand and looks beautiful. Thank you! You've given new life to this old friend!

Would you let me know if you could help me with another fix-up?.

Sue Frank (Philadelphia, PA)

Dear Dr. Tom,

The drum arrived safely.

Perfect craftsmanship! Thank you and congratulations! . . . We are glad we have discovered a superb doctor for our instruments. We will recommend you to other tabla enthusiasts in our area . . . .

All the best,

Devan Kartha (Executive Director, Center For Music By People With Disabilities)

Hi Dr Tom,

. . . I just received the drum - it's just amazing - what a great sound!!

Thanks again!

Erin (Camarillo, CA)

The drums arrived safe and sound. Wow! You do incredible work!

Scott Wagner (Blacksburg, VA)

Dear Friends:
I recently had two right hand tabla-s and one left hand drum re-headed by Dr. Tom of Drum Doctor, at

He did an excellent job and returned the drums promptly and securely. He followed up the process by calling me to set up a key for the drum and advised me with expertise. His charge was reasonable. I was eager to add a gratuity to his charge because of the high quality service.

I highly recommend Dr. Tom for any tabla work you might need done in the future.

Devan Kartha (Missoula, MT)

Hey Dr. Tom,

I got my Djembes back today. GREAT JOB !!!! . . . Thanks so much.

Drummer Denny (Reeds Spring, MO)

Hey Tom:

The drums look and sound great! I look forward to a long relationship.

Thx much!

Danny Howdeshell (CSU East Bay)

Dr Drum,

I got the drum back. Looks great.

Thank you,

Alan Ashenberner (Portland, OR)

OK ... Thank you Dr Tom our drum arrived . . . and we are very happy with it . . . Thank you again for our drum's fast recovery..

Paul D. (Baltimore, MD)

Just opened it up. Fantastic work all around! Very well done, and it sounds beautiful!

I'll pass your info along. It's hard to find people around here who do this.


Robert Wencke (Reno, NV)

Dr. Tom,

The dahina arrived today just in time to miss the remnant rain from Hurricane Irma, and the new head looks and sounds great! Can't believe how quickly you were able to repair it. Thanks a million, and I'll definitely be recommending you to my tabla-playing friends!

Steve Barnhart (Lewisville, NC)

We're located in Watsonville, CA, easily accessible to anyone in the San Francisco Bay Area, San Jose/Silicon Valley, Salinas Valley and the Monterey Bay, but don't worry if you don't live in our neck of the woods. We have years of shipping experience. If you need help with this, or have any other questions, please Contact The Drum Doctor Now. Call us at +1 (831) 428-6626 or email us at [email protected].

Con mucho gusto hablamos Español!