The World Music Expo, or WOMEX, is simply put, a great convention. Besides getting to hear some amazing acts from just about everywhere, it’s also a very convivial gathering. And although there are numerous great musicians booked into the formal venues, sometimes the freshest experiences come from spontaneous performances at the stands in the trade fair.
So to kick off my WOMEX blog series, here’s one such occurrence.

To set the scene: it was almost time for the trade fair to close. There I was, talking to someone in my booth, and suddenly I realized that a young man had sat down on the floor and started playing an instrument that looked like a cross between a steel drum and a flying saucer. I grabbed my Flip camera and caught the moment.
It turns out that the Hang was invented in Switzerland in 2000. So it’s just a baby in the world of instruments. And that also means there’s plenty of room for the instrument — and ways of playing it — to grow. Rafael has a group called The Art of Fusion, (their CD is called “Rhizomism”) and I’ve put his contact info at the end of the vid.

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Here’s where you’ll find my weekly original world music video blogs that appear on Huffington Post, as well as an archive starting in April of 2009.

This is also the place where you will find video that is exclusive to my site. I’ve traveled to places like Uzbekistan, Morocco, and Taiwan and no matter where I go I have found amazingly talented and creative people working in every genre from the deepest traditions to the cutting edge.

It’s been incredibly rewarding to interview them and to capture some of what they do on video. Enjoy what you see and hear, and let me know what you think. I welcome your feedback.