Friday, September 21, 2007

Hang - a steel drum

A hang is a steel drum. It is struck with the fingers, the sound is generally much softer than a steel drum, and can be played in many ways to produce a large variety of sounds.

The hang was devleoped in 2000 in Bern, Switzerland by Felix Rohner and Sabina Schärer (PANArt Hangbau AG) and introduced at Musikmesse Frankfurt in 2001. Its name comes from the Berne dialect word for hand.

The hang is typically played resting on the players' lap, and can also be played on a stand. The inner note on the bottom dome is the bass note, and when played in a dampened way allows change in pitch. Seven (in the bass version) or eight (treble version of the Hang) notes are tuned harmonically around a central deep note. The hemispheres are hardened by a process known as gas-nitriding.

In the spring of 2006 the hangmakers presented a new generation of Hanghang (plural form of Hang). The new instruments have an upper surface of annealed brass and a ring of brass around the circumference.

Here is an introduction video to Hang:

A couple of videos of a good hang drummer

Hang Drum- Manu Delago

And a great video of Hang Drum played live by Beate Gatscha.