gift from Andy Clayton
"Consulted with Ping and her family, here is some info we found: The drum is called 京班鼓, "jīng bān gǔ", and like many item/food names in Mandarin, is purely descriptive: "Beijing opera ensemble drum". "jīng" is the 2nd character of and is short for Beijing, "bān" is 'ensemble', and "gǔ" is drum. In English searches it comes up as 'jingban drum'.
Here are a couple videos I found, this looks like a typical jingban ensemble where you can see it used https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2OhU-Lsxw8 and here is a white guy of unknown pedigree playing a few traditional patterns: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77MmDSyCkho You have probably found all the interesting sounds possible from the thing, but maybe there is something interesting in those?"