Background Story

I have been a percussionist since the age of 14, first learning how to play the Drumkit and later traditional African instruments such as Djembe, Doun Doun, Balaphone and Kalimba. In 2005 I discovered the Hang drum, which has become my main passion and instrument of choice. Unlike other Hang players, I play the Hang as a percussionist and allow influences such as traditional African music to come through resulting in a unique style and sound. In addition to having a successful career as a Hang player and musician, I have also mentored and taught other musicians how to play the Hang for the last 8 years.  I offer Hang lessons to those interested, either in person or virtually, for € 35 an hour.  For more information please reach out using the contact form.


What is the Hang?


The Handpan or “Hang” evolved from a Trinidad steel drum by flipping a custom hand-hammered metal pan from a concave to a convex position. It is tuned with seven to eight notes that are made profoundly sensitive to the lightest touch, allowing musicians to play the instrument by hand. The center note of the instrument, referred to as “the ding” bubbles out from the middle while the notes of the musical scale circling around the ding and up the sides of the pan are sunken into the metal as you would see with a traditional Trinidad steel pan. The tuned convex pan is sealed together resulting in a resonating chamber with an opening in the middle, called the “Gu”, which creates the aesthetically mysterious UFO shape. Sonically the Hang is an overtone-emitting instrument that has the capacity to create many layers of sound and ethereal effects when played.

Posted by Stephen Gibbs on Wednesday, February 21, 2018