Aug 28, 2009

The Hang Drum

I (somehow) came across this video this morning, and I decided to post it partly because it's a great performance, but also because I wanted to find out exactly what in the hell it is he's playing. Looks sort of like he's playing a miniature downed spacecraft of some sort.

Turns out it's called a Hang Drum, and the guy in the video is just really very good with it. According to the ever-venerable source Wikipedia:

A Hang (pronunciation between the vowel sounds in the word 'Hot' and 'Hungry') is a harmonically tuned steel idiophone created by PANArt in Switzerland. It uses some of the same physical principles as a steelpan but with a nitrided surface and structural change of having two clamped shells with a small opening so that the instrument is a Helmholtz Resonator.

EDIT: Based on the recommendations of a commenter, I decided to post a supplemental video showing the range of the Hang Drum. The commenter - as you can well see in the comments - stated that the Hang Drum isn't really a drum at all, but a new, hardly categorizable instrument. Enjoy. The guy's name is Matt Venuti, and he "shreds" on the Hang Drum. It's really a sight to behold.


  1. Great clip! Love the sound and range of the Hang. Although often referred to as a drum because it's played with the hands, it's really a new acoustic instrument with a range of resonance and technique options that defy classification. Another talented Hang player to check out is Matt Venuti. He rings it like a singing bowl, plays bass lines, plucks it like a harp, chucks it like a rhythm guitar, and expresses beautiful melodies. He has several videos on YouTube:

  2. Thanks for the response. Yeah, I'm just learning about the Hang 'Drum' myself, since I found it on the internet today. Thank you for clarifying, though clarifying only makes the instrument harder to classify! I'll check out the vids on Youtube and possible post one of them. Thanks, again!