Conservation DistList Archives [Date] [Subject] [Author] [SEARCH]

Subject: Odor in cow hide

Odor in cow hide

From: Angela Dawn Brunk <abrunk>
Date: Monday, April 8, 2002
On behalf of a private owner, Sue Valis <suev [at] austmus__gov__au> writes

>    I have recently purchased an African drum with a cow hide
>    playing surface. It appears that every time there is higher
>    humidity, the drum develops a particularly nasty odour.
>    I have gone back to the place of purchase, only to be advised
>    that I should rub some salt into the skin. Can anyone offer an
>    explanation for the smell and a way of getting rid of it.

Well, I guess this just proves you never know when musical knowledge
might come in handy.  A drummer and umbire player from Zimbabwe told
me they use cow dung to condition hide drum heads. (he was working
with my choir)  That would be my guess as to the source of the odor,
especially if the hide head has any brownish spots. (Seriously, once
Mautiure told me what he used to condition the head, it's appearance
made perfect sense.) I don't know how to remove the odor.

Angie Brunk, MLS
Microfilming Project Assistant
Preservation Department
Main Library Indiana University

                  Conservation DistList Instance 15:69
                  Distributed: Tuesday, April 9, 2002
                       Message Id: cdl-15-69-003
Received on Monday, 8 April, 2002

[Search all CoOL documents]