There is a story-tale mystique to Ravid’s music. As if emerging from a perpetual stream of smoke, this musician embodies the infatuating allure of the Pied Piper and like an affixiated follower; you have to chase the melody. His instrument – the Hang – was developed in Berne, Switzerland by Sabina Schärer and Felix Rohner in 2000. One of the world’s finest exponents of the Hang drum, Ravid has an extraordinary ability to conjure a harmonious feast of sound from the instrument. It’s only when you see
him perform that you can believe the sound comes from just one man and one Hang.
Ravid started playing drums and studying the theory of music aged 11. He first heard the Hang at a festival in 2002 and was immediately inspired to play it. He bought his first Hang and went to live in the desert, where the stillness and silence provided the perfect environment to master the instrument. Later he travelled to Switzerland where he lived with the inventors of the Hang, learning the process of making and tuning the instrument, whilst evolving his technique and developing his unique playing style.
He moved to Spain in 2004 and in a collaboration with Meera Fe won an International competition for Ethnic Music at “The Certamen de Maquetas de Musica Etnica Sin Fronteras”. Later that year whilst working with Spanish guitarist Toni Xucla on a project at The Institute of Dance in Barcelona he attracted the attention of Jazz bassist Carles Benavent. Enthralled by Ravid’s performance Carles invited him to join The Carles Benevant Quartet. In addition to touring with Carles throughout Europe, Ravid released his first solo CD “Wave”, at the end of 2004. In 2005 Ravid participated in the highly successful Sakia Tashi Ling “Monjes Budistas” CD and continued touring with The Carles Benavent Quartet. He also joined Shirai, an experimental group featuring Crystal Bowls, vocals, dijiridu, violin, percussion and Hang.
“I am interested in playing the Hang in as many different contexts as possible” says Ravid. Though, with only 7 or 8 tones, (depending on the generation of the Hang) it remains a challenge to create original and ground-breaking pieces. Ravid explains that the limits of the tones are comparable to a dancer who is confined to a small space – she has to experiment to use this space wisely and creatively. Similarly, Ravid is constantly exploring different rhythms and combinations of tones to ensure that he continues to wow himself and his audience.
Keen to demonstrate the versatility of the Hang, Ravid creates different musical dialogues. His latest recording “Ravid Hang” is a celebration of his journey with the instrument and the incredible musicians he has crossed paths with. The dazzling contributions from Carles Benevant (Chic Corea, Paco de Lucia), Spanish guitar maestro Toni Xucla, vocalist Silvia Perez Cruz, pianist Raffel Plana, South African Johan “yoyo” Buys (The Usual, Zohar and Roachford) Danny Keane (Tom Baxter and The Gorillaz) and legendary percussionist Preston Heyman (whose credits include Kate Bush, Paul Mc Cartney, Tina Turner, Phil Collins, Terence Trent D'Arby) combine to deliver a truly innovative new sound, a sound so unique it is impossible to categorise. Ravid maintains that the Hang cannot be bracketed; it stands on its own in the realm of musical instruments and speaks a new language that needs to be explored. To understand Ravid’s music, he requires the entire audience to become an artist in their own right – rather than just acting as spectator, they must indulge their own creativity in the experience of listening.
Ravid’s mastery of the instrument and passion for exploring and sharing its extraordinary resonance is a mesmerising experience not to be missed.
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