Let me start this off by saying I am by no means a conga player, I don't know anything about their construction, or the proper technique in playing them.
But I've been getting steady gigs with a friend of mine playing congas in an acoustic duo. I've been doing it for a few months now, and I'm using my dad's old congas that he left me. All through winter they've sounded fine, but this last gig they were totally lifeless. I may as well have been slapping cardboard boxes.
I assume the problem lies in the heads since they're older than I am. I'm just not sure if I should replace original calfskin heads with some synthetic knockoff that's out there today. What do you guys think I can do with these? Is there anything I need to know before I try tightening them up, or should I just swap out the old heads for something fresh? I'd love some advice from some folks that have experience with congas... Because I have none!
And for the hell of it, here's some conga porn...