The island of Malakula is located far off of the coast of Australia and is the second largest island in a cluster making up the nation of Venuatu. Its remote location made it ripe for unique cultural evolution. Among the rare endemic offerings? Giant slit drums (or boo-boos) with intricately carved "tiki gods!" These drums were used for dancing and ceremonies, but also as a way to communicate from farther distances with members of the tribe.
Though a video of these grandiose drums being played is apparently quite hard to find, smaller less intricate cousins are still made today. The idea remains relatively similar. A slit is made through the center of a single trunk of wood. When stuck it resonates a melodic percussion associated with tribes in the south seas. Here is a video of a bamboo slit drum:
Not only did the imagineers get the Adventureland Tiki Drums sound perfect, but the look is a great example of exaggerated reality. Personally, I never realized that the mouths of the tikis were the source (or supposed source) of resonation...I just thought is was terrific stylization.
Agh! How is this the only usable photo I have!!!???
and never forget this...