My teacher Sidy was playing a different drum tonight. It was a regular djembe, but instead of a goatskin head, it had cowhide. It was thick and looked a little like a rawhide doggy chew.
The sound was deeper and less sharp. At some point, Sidy got up and started looking around the basement. We just kept playing.
Eventually he found what he was looking for: a big mallet with a metal head.
He walked over to the drum and started whacking the rim. I think the rings were wiggling loose and he wanted to push them back down.
What a difference in the sound of the drum!
Next time my drum starts to give me trouble, I am going to try whacking it upside the head.