Tone Tribe Tongue Drum Review

Steel Tongue Drum

Tone Tribe has done something very interesting indeed…They have designed their drums by focusing on the major keys corresponding to the 7 main chakras.

Tone Tribe says they wanted to focus on the heart chakra with this drum and chose the key of F for that purpose.

Tone Tribe Steel Tongue Drum

Product Highlights

Their first installment is a 12-inch, 11-note drum in the key of F Major. If you take a look at the competition, there are very few drums (if any) in F Major.

As with other 12-inch drums we reviewed, this one sits comfortably in your lap or on a table top. The current colors available are blue, gray, and gold.

Inside the beautiful box is everything you need to start drumming immediately:

  • A deliciously designed Italian-style padded carrying case with strap and handle
  • Two durable playing mallets
  • Finger picks (if you like to play with your fingers)
  • Extra stickers
  • Super helpful instruction guide with popular notated sheet music (this is a bonus – you may know that many of the other drum makers include a simple red book with some songs but they aren’t immediately recognizable)

The Good

Our favorite part about this drum is the sound quality from each tongue. They really hit the mark here on quality. Granted these instruments are not precision musical devices and you really shouldn’t expect that when you buy any of them. However, there is definitely a difference when you get a tongue drum that isn’t made properly (tinny notes, some of them are duds, etc.).

Beginners will like the easy-to-read instructions and Tone Tribe also has video instructions to tune your drum and basic setup. They are quick to post videos on their site to show you new song renditions and they also want to hear from you (another point that makes this brand stand out).

The manufacturer offers a 90-Day warranty against defects — something lacking among other competitors — so the purchase is risk free.

Finally, this brand is based in the United States and owned by US citizens. The level of customer service is excellent and they respond very quickly…MAJOR PLUS!

The Bad

Although the company is based in the US, they do import their handmade drums from China at the moment. If you look into any of the other competitors you will find they are either Chinese or import from China. There is just something to be said about the Chinese infrastructure to manufacture these instruments. Don’t let this sway your opinion though, you will receive a top-notch quality product from any of the makers reviewed here.

Another annoyance is the UV sticker on each of the tongue numbers. You can of course remove these clear pieces and it won’t affect the drum – they are in place to protect the tongue numbers.

Pros

  • Full sound quality
  • Different color options
  • Excellent instruction manual (video instructions when you go to their site)
  • Fully notated sheet music (reading music not required – just play the number)
  • 90 Day warranty
  • US-based business interested in its customers and service-oriented

Cons

  • UV sticker on the numbers
  • Only 3 colors for now
  • Not the cheapest (but also not the most expensive)