Sofie, my neighbor’s dog, loves it when I sing with her. She is rhythmic to the yodelling. We want to develop that now. Maybe she’ll learn overtone singing.

Stuart Hinds sings the opening theme of The Andy Griffith Show (1960 – 1968) with four-part overtone singing and duplicates his voice to take over the two-part whistle with two overtones.

The “Melksuit” (milking suite) of the Swiss duo Stimmhorn with Christian Zehnder and Balthasar Streiff receives with ” I’ ve seen the night” a very unconventional video clip by video artist Hansjörg Palm. The shoe art video of the Freiburg artist, made in 2004, was awarded the Media Art Prize Upper Rhine in 2007. I like the likeness of humor in music and film.

With millions of clicks, the Mongolian The Hu Band is attracting attention right now. They have been working on their debut album for seven years and have now released two viral videos. They call their style “hunnu rock”, which probably has its roots in the Mongolian word for human, хүн. “It’s not rock music played by Mongolians. It’s Mongolian rock music.” the Metal-Hammer quotes the American music ethnology doctoral student Thalea Stokes. NPR even calls it Havy Metal.

Obviously the group reaches a clientele that doesn’t know throat singing yet and compares it with growling from the metal scene. Those who have been to Mongolia are familiar with the sounds, and you can hear a lot from the traditional Xhöömei music, from instruments, vocal techniques to melodies. The videos are great. The rider warrior with motorbike escort does a good job.

“Silent Night, Holy Night”, the world’s most famous Christmas song, was sung for the first time on 24.12.1818, exactly 200 years ago. On Christmas Eve 1818 the Arnsdorf village school teacher and organist Franz Xaver Gruber (1787-1863) and the auxiliary priest Joseph Mohr (1792-1848) performed the Christmas carol for the first time in the Schifferkirche St. Nikola in Oberndorf near Salzburg, Austria. (Wikipedia)

For this version for overtone singing, the brilliant pianist Michael Reimann has improvised a piano movement on the electric piano. The notes for overtone singing are suitable for beginners. At one point, however, a small psychoacoustic trick is used, because one of the melody notes is not actually included in the overtone series. Who can find it?

Michael Reimann:
Video: Ljubljana Christmas Market filmed from the castle.

Doris Kirschhofer is a lecturer at the University of Sport Salzburg, produces acrobatics shows on a large scale and is a singer whose fine-ironic electro-alpine ethno-pop gets a very individual touch through her overtone and undertone singing.

Stuart Hinds, the master of polyphonic overtone singing, has recorded a beautiful interpretation of Johannes Brahms’ Lullaby and Goodnight. You can download a simpler version of it here in sheet music and practice it yourself.

Stuart Hinds is undoubtedly the master of polyphonic overtone singing. He sets standards for this young vocal technique with his compositions. With Goin’ home, a melody from the second movement of the Ninth Symphony of by Czech composer Anonín Dvořák, Hinds here presents one of his easier pieces, that nevertheless will be a challenge for most overtone singers.

In addition to the version for solo baritone overtone singer and keyboad Hinds wrote a choral version, dedicated to the Prague ensemble Sprektrum, that sings the overtone part with even serveral choral singers. With such compositions hopefully many singers are encouraged to explore the fascinating possibilities of the polyphonic overtone singing.

Recording of the first movement “Roncesvalles” from “Path of Miracles” by Joby Talbot. The choir Tenebrae sings under Nigel Short.

The English composer Joby Talbot wrote this work in 2005 on behalf of the ensemble Tenebrae under the direction of Nigel Short. It is set for 17-part mixed choir a cappella SSSSSAAAATTTTBBBB and Crotales.

This four-movement work describes a pilgrimage along four of the most important stations of the Way of St. James to Santiago: I Roncesvalles, II Burgos, III León, IV Santiago. The composer dedicated the composition to his father, who died in the year of composition. The premiere, which was scheduled for 07.07.2005 in London, had to be postponed due to the bombings on this day and took place on 17.07.2015 in the St. Bartholomew-the-Great Church in London.

The first movement begins the pilgrimage in Roncesvalles with a mystical sound ascending in glissandi, based on the Pasibutbut of the Bunun from Taiwan. The instruction to use different vowels other than /i/ is interpreted by the ensemble – similar to the Pasibutbut – as an overtone chanting. Already on the first four pages, the work demands an enormous range from A1 to C7.


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Joby Talbot wrote the soundtrack to some famous productions like ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’.
Movies with film scores by Joby Talbot (affiliate link to

A composition by Aaron Jensen, Canada 2012, for mixed choir a cappella and overtone soloist.

SSAATTB + overtone singer soloist (khoomej style) 6’00″

Text by Uvavnuk – translation: Jane Hirshfield

Commissioned by The Toronto Arts Council

Premiere: 12.05.2013 — The Elmer Iseler Singers, conductor Lydia Adams

Guest overtone singer: Scott Peterson

More about the composition on Aaron Jensen’s website.