This incredible overtone singing started in the small republic of Tuva, a Siberian republic on the border of Mongolia and is known as throat singing (xöömei in Tuvan). Tuvan throat singers can produce two, three and sometimes even four pitches simultaneously. This ancient style of singing is accompanied by horse hooves, bull testicles (yes, you heard me correctly – a percussion instrument!) and horse hair fiddle. It was developed among the nomadic herdsmen of Central Asia, people who had a very close relationship with the land living in yurts, riding horses and raising yaks, sheep and camels. Apparently this style was commonly done by the men, outdoors, and only recently was used in a concert / performance situation. Singers use their voices to mimic and interact with the sounds of the natural world — whistling birds, bubbling streams, blowing wind, or the deep growl of a camel.
Huun-Huur-Tu (means refraction of sunlight or sound) formed in 19992 and carry the wonderful tradition of Tuvan folk songs using their traditional instruments including the horse hair fiddle – the morin khuur (national instrument of Mongolia).
Recordings of Huun-Huur-Tu that you might find interesting:-
- 60 Horses In My Herd – Old Songs and Tunes of Tuva – (1993)
- The Orphan’s Lament – (1994)
- Fly, Fly My Sadness – with The Bulgarian Voices & Sergey Starostin – (1996)
- If I’d Been Born An Eagle – (1997)
- Mountain Tale – with The Bulgarian Voices & Moscow Art Trio – (1998)
- Where Young Grass Grows – (1999)
- Best Live – Live 1 – (2001)
- More Live – Live 2 – (2002)
- Huun-Tuur-Tu & Malerija (Remix album) – (2002)
- Altai Sayan Tandy-Uula – (2004)
- Eternal – (2009)
- Legend – with The Bulgarian Voices & Moscow Art Trio – (2010)
- Ancestors Call – (2010)