Reto Weber Where Are You Now?

(Artikel von HandPansMAGAZINE)


Reto Weber

And while evidence appears to suggest (albeit fragmented and incomplete) that an interview published in the Swiss music magazine, Swiss Musikzeitung, named Reto, as the inventor of the Hang.  Prompting Hang-maker, Felix Rohner to respond – ‘The slope is not the result of an idea’, ‘The history of the Hang is not the story of an Invention in the classical sense an instrument that such a world great response trigger as the Hang, you can not invent’.  It certainly seems possible that without Reto’s suggestion, the Hang might never have been born.  And whether you consider the man with the raw idea, or the man who takes that raw idea, and beats it into life with a hammer, to be the inventor – we leave to you.While we could find no mention of Reto Weber’s part-played in PANArt’s 2013 published book, Hang: Sound Sculpture.  Delve back through older resources and you’ll find numerous references as to the Swiss percussionist, Reto Weber, being credited as being the man who first suggested the idea of an instrument like the Hang / Handpan, to steel-instrument manufacturers PANArt. Expressing a desire for a “sounding pot in steel with some notes to play with the hands”  Which is why back in 2011, we described Reto Weber, as being the “Spark that started a Handpan fire”.

‚it sounds like it was a leap of insight when the right people got asked by someone to realize a vague notion — people who were able to take that seed and rapidly bring it to flower.‘ – Aaron Ximm

Reto Weber Where Are You Now?

Sixteen years on from the birth of the instrument that Reto’s 1999 visit to the Hanghaus ignited, and we can see that Reto Weber is still very much playing Hang.  Primarily it seems (at time of posting) alongside, Chico Freeman. A modern jazz tenor saxophonist and trumpeter, and son of jazz saxophonist, Von Freeman…

And while the video above is a few years old now, the following more recent offering from just four days back, shows that the Hang, PANArt’s take on Reto’s imagined ‘sounding pot with notes’ – is still very much in his heart, and in his lap…

Reto Weber – The Spark that Started a HandPan Fire

(Artikel von HandPans MAGAZINE)

They say that “there’s no fire, without a spark!”, and while PANArt’s Felix Rohner,and Sabina Schärer are without doubt responsible for the physical creationof the Hang, if one man could be said to be responsible for providing the spark that breathed life into these most sought after of metallic UFOs , and ultimately all of the HandPan that would follow in their path, it would have to be ‘Reto Weber’.

Every Great Invention Starts with a Simple Idea

Born in Switzerland in 1953, Reto Weber, is a master percussionist by trade, who has traveled the world performing on such instruments as the steel pan, gongs, bells, and balaphones (among others). And it was during Reto Weber’s visit to PANArt in November, of 1999, that the seed for the idea of the Hang was first sown.

Having demonstrated his skills on the Ghatam, and having been shown PANArt’s earlier creations known commonly as the ‘PANG drums’, or ‘PANG instruments‘, that consisted of a mish-mash of resonant steel instruments, including steel pan, bell, gong, gamelan, and cymbal (like) creations. Reto Weber shared a desire for a “sounding pot in steel with some notes to play with the hands”. And from there, with a lot of hard work on PANArt’s part, the Hang was born…

These days Reto Weber can be found performing with his self-titled outfit ‘Reto Weber’s Squeezeband’, an eclectic ensemble who with their 2004 album ‘Squeeze Me’, offer up a diverse seven track release, that in addition to featuring some very nice beat boxing,and some sweet Ghatam, among its other audio treats, also sees the man who is at least partially responsible for bringing Hanghang into the world, performing on the instrument that he’d always dreamt of playing, and the instrument that started a singing steel revolution.
You can find Reto Weber’s album ‚Squeeze Me‘ for sale: HERE, or alternatively, you can visit Reto Weber over at his own personal website: HERE.