SPYROS PAN(agiotopoulos)

This is where I give a little info about myself and the music I compose. I was born in Athens in 1978. My studies included Economics at the University of Piraeus followed by a master’s degree in Human Resources at Warwick Business School. When it comes to music studies, I would describe myself as musically illiterate; I haven’t had ‘proper’ music education in a school or next to a teacher.

I find enormous pleasure in listening to and expressing myself through sound. The music I play has to create some kind of emotional response to me otherwise I quickly discard my ideas and start afresh. If it does not move my heart, I look for something else. After all if there is no enjoyment, why keep doing something?

For me music goes beyond form. I do not know the laws of music in the rigid meaning of the term nor have I studied harmony. I just like to observe the sound qualities of all sonic stimuli in the environment, a habit that I remember from my early childhood days. My approach to playing the handpan and any other instrument for that matter, is a kinesthetic one.

I never liked putting tags in music but if you had to ask what kind of music I play, my answer would be something like that: “A fuzion of contemporary ethnic, post-minimalistic and ambient that I like to call progressive acoustic chill out.”

The story of how I came in contact with the handpan is one that I will be telling my grandchildren if I am ever granted with the joy to become a grandfather. A short version of it is this:

In 2007 and whilst working in the HR department of London School of Economics, I took the drastic decision to take 180 degrees change of course in my life. I resigned from my position and left London in order to attend an eco-community in Madeira island and study permaculture. I wanted to conduct a little life experiment testing two variables, that of quality of life and growing your own food. The questions was: “If I invest my time in growing my own food instead of working to buy it from obscure sources (ie super markets), will I have more or less time available to do the things that inspire me? Will I have less money but better quality of life?” It was during this life experiment when I learned of the existence of a new and revolutionary instrument known as the Hang.

Intrigued by the mystery revolving around it, I decided to follow the traces and meet my first Hang in September 2007. This meeting signified the start of a sonic journey exploring the possibilities and endless dynamics of this new instrument.

Almost a decade after I got my first Hang, my portfolio includes three full length albums, one EP and various appearances in other recorded studio works of composers in Greece.

And as far as the food experiment? I still do not grow my own food, but getting into activities that inspire me, have made me a happier person. If not a better one.

Spyros Pan.
September 2016.

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