If you want to learn more about playing the handpan, who better to follow than the best handpan players on the planet?
Who is the most followed handpan player in the world? – According to YouTube subscriber count and video views, the three most popular handpan players are – 1. Hang Massive, 2. Daniel Waples, 3. Yuki Koshimoto. I have 13 players in the full list and would like to introduce three more players you have to get to know.
You may be researching with interest in getting started with handpan, and trying to decide what scale you want. Each player has a section below. Providing a link to their best videos and details on which handpan and scale is played.
List of best handpan players in 2022
This list is the most followed handpan players in the world derived from YouTube subscriber count and total video views and was updated on 29th November 2021
Yatao increased subscriptions from 88k to 200k between Oct 2019 and Dec 2021, and views from 11m to 26m.
proving to be far the biggest in terms of growth on the list during this period
Who is Hang Massive? – They are a handpan duo consisting of Danny Cudd and Markus Offbeat
They uploaded a video to YouTube in 2011 for a track called ‘Once Again’. Filmed in Bath in the UK and playing the original Hang from PANArt, it quickly went viral and to date has been viewed over 40 million times, contributing over half of the total 71.8m views on the Hang Massive YouTube Channel. With a vast 363,000 subscribers, it is safe to say Hang massive are the most popular handpan player on YT at this moment.
Who is Daniel Waples? – One of the world’s most followed handpan players. He has over 16m views of his videos on his channel and is by far the most popular solo handpan artiste on the site.
From London, he is entirely self-taught since he acquired his first handpan in 2007. He plays a PANArt Hang also.
Who is Yuki Koshimoto? – Originally from Japan, her handpan playing began in 2011 after seeing a busker playing in London.
She plays a spacedrum mainly in her videos and has amassed 103,000 subscribers and over 15m video views.
MUMI handpan is a new inclusion in this list of most followed handpan players although not new to the handpan nor music in general having reportedly taken up playing instruments as a child
What stands her apart here is she also makes the instruments and in particular the one in the video below, which really launched her following on YouTube.
Prior to this video her channel had been live for seven years, then she dropped this Nothing Else Matters Cover on Handpan, and it is now closing in on 2 million views. With it, her subscriber count is moving rapidly upward.
Based in Milan, you can find out more about the instrument here.
But let’s take a moment to appreciate the talent on show here.
- Made the Instrument
- Plays the handpan amazingly pulling out the complicated overtones
- Sings beautifully
Who are Yatao? – A German duo consisting of Malte Marten and Alexander Mercks. They met and formed Yatao in 2014. Live performances are often improvised, and additional instruments such as a digeridoo are introduced.
One such performance has gained over 5 million views on YouTube alone. The video is below.
Who is Adrian Portia? -From Melbourne in Australia and a hugely accomplished percussionist and drummer. With such a background as a decorated drummer, he has a unique handpan style and performs all across the globe. He also forms one half of the duo Pangaroos with Jeremy Diffey.
Teaching handpan around the world, you can follow Adrian’s activities on his Facebook page
Who is Nadishana? – A multi-instrumentalist hailing from Siberia but now based in Berlin. His videos have gained over ten million views on YouTube, and he is one of the best handpan players right now.
You will find a whole host of instruments played on the channel. His handpan skills are on full display in the video below.
Who is Rafael Sotomayor? – On social media, possibly better known as the founder of ‘The Art of Fusion’, or TAOF for short, Rafael Sotomayor is an accomplished and experimental Hang player.
Often seen performing with several handpans at once, using loop stations and more, he pushes the boundaries of handpan playing constantly.
Who is Kabeção? – A sound explorer by self-definition, and highly-skilled, well-travelled and in-demand handpan player too. Otherwise known as Carlos Rodrigues from Portugal, another who continues to push the musical possibilities of the handpan and can be seen playing multiple instruments simultaneously.
Who was Dante Bucci? – ‘One of the most impressive, compelling, and unique musicians alive today’, was one quote aimed at Dante for his performances on the handpan before his untimely death at age 34.
Certainly, when you see what he could do and the sound he managed to produce from the handpan, he has to be considered one of the best handpan players, not to mention percussionists. to have graced the world
Who is Sam Maher? – Sam is one of the most popular handpan players in 2019, thanks to a NY Underground video released on the BUSKRS channel.
He is filmed playing a TerraTonz TerraPan [Scale: C, Aeolian. – Notes: (C#)-G#-A-B-C#-D#-E-F#-G#]
I wasn’t going to add another video so soon after the last but if you’ve not seen this, you really should.
Who is Vasilis Vasiliou? – A Cypriot multi-instrumentalist with 10,000 subscribers on YouTube with over 1 million views.
This performance of ‘Carol of The Bells’ is entrancing. Not just for the tune, as it is for the accompanying video.
Playing an Orbipan [D] here, he also plays, Cajon, Frame Drums and Tamburello.
Who is Davide Swarup? – He is a meditative Hang player whose performances can not be predicted, not even by the man himself. He claims to allow the music to come to him as he plays in a meditative state.
Certainly, there is something in his music that makes you stick around and continue listening. Three million video views on YT attest to that.
Who is Manu Delago? – Manu is an Austrian handpan player based in London in the UK. His style is very experimental, as demonstrated with his latest project ‘Manu Delago Handmade’. The band features electronic beats and a range of string instruments in addition to the Hang.
I highly recommend checking out his considerable portfolio of handpan music on Spotify.
Not on the list are the following three players who, I have connected with through the power of facebook and whose music inspires me.
The list above is pure popularity, but we should not forget there are thousands of very skilled musicians with smaller audiences who can produce wonderful music, improvisation and new sounds from experimentation on this beautiful instrument.
So with that introduction, please let me present.
Ted Munyer – The Handpan Project
Follow The Handpan Project on Facebook to keep in touch with what Ted is creating. If you’ve never seen a 20 note handpan played, or didn’t even believe they existed, check out this video and see what is possible.
Tom Vaylo is another hugely talented handpan player who likes to mix it up with other instruments. Always an acoustic fan, he mixes various instruments to his handpan playing, but can also produce quite stunning music on the pan alone.
Below you can see Tom playing an incredible 18note handpan.
Lewa is an artiste from Almeria in Southern Spain. In high demand for collaborations, you should take a look at her growing page and give her a follow
Closing words on the best handpan players list.
I hope to have brought to you, not only the best handpan players but also some musicians, who push the boundaries of what can be achieved with this incredible instrument.
And let’s not forget the contribution to the masterful creators, of the instruments used by these artists.
The player’s list is not designed to be definitive, instead, based on current popularity in terms of the most followed on YouTube, and that will change over time, and this list will need updating. I have tried to pre-empt some future ‘most popular’ players, who I am sure, and hope will become more widely known such as Yatao.
Right now, with the explosion in popularity of the handpan, more players, with new approaches, styles and techniques are coming to the fore always, and the pool of talented handpan players is growing exponentially