As the name, ‘Disco Armonico’ (meaning ‘harmonic disc’), was often used in place of the name ‘Hang’, in Italy, by retailers of PANArts earlier instruments (and is another name that went on to be used in a more general way to some degree), the name, ‘Pantam’, was used in a similar fashion, by at least one PANArt retailer, in Israel. And in Israel at least, the name has stuck.
Now used widely in Israel, as a name for both Hang, and all of the instruments that we here would label ‘HandPan’ (Hang-like, or Hang-inspired instruments), the Pantam label has recently (at time of wriitng) been put forward as a possible globalalternative to the HandPan moniker (which has always had its opponents).
Pantam, is said to be a combination of the words: Pan, and Ghatam. Two instruments that are noted, as being an influence in the creation of the Hang.
Why do people want to replace the HandPan name?
As we understand it, it is primarily an issue of poetry (for lack of a better term). And that opponents of the HandPan name do not feel that it does such a beautiful instrument justice. Whether or not the Pantam label will replace HandPan, or not, only time will tell (though we suspect not, globally).
Other alternatives that have been put forward over the years to replace the less poetic, but functional HandPan title, include: ‘Cupola’, ‘Kupu’, and the rather mouthful’ish, ‘Harmonically Tuned Sheet Steel Instruments’.
For further discussion on the Pantam you might try the following:http://www.handpan.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=392