Ganga Giri
Gig Seeker Pro

Ganga Giri

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia | SELF

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia | SELF
Band EDM World


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Spirits soar as didgeridoo takes centre stage in Bali festival"

Spirits soar as didgeridoo takes centre stage in Bali festival
• Deborah Cassrels
• From: The Australian
• April 13, 2010 12:00AM
"WHAT'S your real name?" an Australian woman asks, sidling up to didgeridoo master Ganga Giri, the hottest sensation to perform at the Bali Spirit Festival in Ubud earlier this month.
I lean in to eavesdrop. We are filing up the hill carrying a bunch of didgeridoos. Five minutes earlier the instruments had been sampled by enthusiasts at Giri's packed workshop, a tropical amphitheatre facing rice paddies.
"It's Ganga," he says with a smile. "That's what my mother named me. It's on my birth certificate." Ganga Giri means River Mountain in Sanskrit. "It also helps to sell records," he says later.
The 36-year-old from Port Fairy, Victoria, has indigenous Tasmanian ancestry. His adopted roots, though, are in Arnhem Land, pulling him back to the home of the didgeridoo time and again. Tattoos and earrings seem to complement his "fat, funky, tribal dance tunes" and reflect contemporary Australia.
He started playing the didgeridoo as a child after being inspired by a dream. A long-time devotee of meditation and yoga, he was quite at home at the five-day festival of yoga, dance and music, which drew about 700 people, ranging in age from baby boomers to generations X, Y and Z. ("I'm in a bliss pocket," one American singer told the crowd.)
Sponsored by the Australia-Indonesia Institute, Ganga Giri's ensemble included Australians Yeshe Reiners (percussion), Dan Pearson (electric drums) and Cye Wood (violin). Indigenous musician Gumaroy did not attend.
It was the second year Giri had appeared at the festival and he hit a high note at his Saturday evening performance with the fusion of didgeridoo and Balinese gamelan music.
The result of a six-month collaboration with I Nyoman Windha and his Balinese orchestra, the performance of improvised numbers featured the jegog and slonding: bamboo xylophone-like percussive instruments.
Giri revels in the fact he has broken new ground. "No one is doing it," he says. "We felt it was important to have shared music. There will be some incredible recordings. We'd love to take this music back to Australia."
The addition of traditional Balinese instruments to electronic dance music, he says, "offers so much more than droning. It's dynamic rhythm taken to the next level." He hopes the musical collaboration will help dissolve the stereotypical impressions that some Australians have of the island, such as the Bali bombings, and the beer and discos of Kuta.
A livewire on stage, Giri's bopping and bouncing recall the hyperactive David Byrne. Among his festival repertoire were five numbers from a new album, Good Voodoo, to be released next month, and a smattering from his seven other albums.
So infectious were Giri's music and on-stage vigour that within minutes of hearing his booming didge, the audience morphed into a screaming, pulsating, shaking mass. Among the crowd was a Muslim woman bopping vigorously, her jilbab billowing as she mingled with the scantily clad crowd.
The mostly improvised performance included various vocalists, a beat-box hip-hop artist, giant gargoyle-like puppets, gyrating belly dancers and Balinese dancers. The distinctive sound of the didge mixed with the soft touch of the gamelan.When the gamelan rhythms mimicked a Michael Flatley, Lord of the Dance beat, the audience went wild, whooping and leaping about.
What did the Balinese musicians think of it all? "They were just beaming, that was the highlight for me," Giri says. "On a creative level, the sky's the limit."
The day after the performance, Giri gives a workshop on didgeridoo for about 50 people. None of the participants has an Australian accent. Giri stresses the importance of lip and breath control in order to achieve the drone. "Keep squeezing those cheeks and get some sound happening," he says. "That's the hardest part of circular breathing."
Many of the participants appreciate the meditative qualities of playing the instrument, Giri says, "but most who learn are musicians who want to complement other instruments".
The Ubud group is mesmerised. An American woman describes the experience of playing the didge as "a profound sensation". "The vibration of the sound resonates throughout my body," she says.
The softly spoken Giri, who formed his band 20 years ago, teaches between tours in Europe and the US. People find the group exotic wherever they go. He has a huge following in Germany where he's sold 26,000 didgeridoos, made at the shop in Ubud.
"Ganga Giri is a magician, he can take anything and make it work" festival founder Meghan Pappenheim says. "He understands the nuances."
- The Australian Newspaper


Good Voodoo - LP - 2010
Raising it Up - LP - 2006
Beats around the Bush - 2003



GANGA GIRI - BIO (gun-gah gear-ree)

GANGA GIRI, rhythmic didgeridoo virtuoso and percussionist, reflects much of the creative inspiration which Australia represents today. Explosive and pulsating; ambient and flowing at times - GANGA GIRI is a pumping percussive multi-layered experience of complex grooves and raw, deep natural sound. An inspired music creator whose passion brings people together in a modern day corroboree.

Blending an array of tribal percussive beats, fat funky bass lines and pumping didgeridoo with congas, bougarabou, Nigerian talking drum, mbira and kamele n’goni with authentic indigenous moves, Aboriginal dancers and international vocalists. GANGA GIRI’s live show is a modern/primitive celebration; a melting pot unifying many musical genres and cultures.

Delivering his unique and authentic taste of multicultural Australia GANGA GIRI’s music has been widely & wildly appreciated by music lovers in many countries including Australia, Japan, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Netherlands, New Zealand and the United States igniting audiences in clubs and music festivals all over the world including some of the biggest outdoor dance events across the globe.

GANGA GIRI is a remarkably energetic and innovative live act. He has achieved something rare and precious which few artists are able to capture mixing natural elements with fat tribal beats and dirty funky bass lines to create a unique tribal-technological deep earth dance experience.

“GANGA GIRI is a wonderful musician. I first heard him at a Womad Festival, and loved the mix of his ancient and primitive instrument with a wide range of great dance grooves. Ganga is really taking the didgeridoo to places it has never been before and developing a unique style of music.” Peter Gabriel - Real World Records

Joining GANGA GIRI on stage is Gumilaroi - Wakka Wakka nations Indigenous singer; Didgeridoo player and dancer Gumaroy, rich dub/reggae dancehall vocalist and celebrator Jornick hailing from French Guyana, Dan on drums and samples, Yeshe on percussion and melodic world instruments (Mbira and Kamele N’goni). Band members also include Nui (percussion), Roy Buchanan (indigenous dancer), Jeremy Donovan (indigenous singer and dancer).