SUN is out now!
Reylon's first solo EP features five core works of classical yangqin music.
courtesy of Jason Jong
Reylon plays the yangqin, a percussive string instrument also known as the Chinese hammered dulcimer. With fifteen years of training in Chinese classical repertoire, his experience now spans a range of styles, including classical crossover, indie folk, and experimental improvisation. After winning multiple U.S.-based competitions, Reylon became the first American to enter a professional yangqin competition in China and won a silver prize at the 2014 Baotou International Dulcimer Arts Festival. In the following year, he began collaborating with Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble and has since performed with them in the U.S., Canada, and China at various venues, including TED 2016 and Lincoln Center. He also appeared as a featured artist on their 2017 GRAMMY Award-winning album, "Sing Me Home."
As a biracial Chinese American, Reylon cherishes the opportunity he has to engage with his heritage through music. Through performance and composition, he hopes he can challenge the widespread assumption that China and the West are mutually exclusive.
"Yao Dance" is a popular 20th-century instrumental piece originating in the Yao community of southern China. In April 2015, Reylon performed this piece with world-renowned musicians Wu Man and Haruka Fujii in Sanders Theatre at Harvard.
"St. James Infirmary Blues" Reylon joined Yo-Yo Ma, the Silk Road Ensemble, and Rhiannon Giddens at MSR Studios to record this tantalizing rendition of an American classic, arranged by Michael Ward-Bergeman for the album "Sing Me Home."
"Turceasca" is a Roma piece that Reylon performed with the Silk Road Ensemble at TED in February, 2016. The performance took place in Vancouver.
"Supermodel" is a track from SZA's 2017 album "Ctrl." This is Reylon's first video playing yangqin while singing.