Canto a tenore, Sardinian pastoral songs

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Canto a tenore has developed within the pastoral culture of Sardinia. It represents a form of polyphonic singing performed by a group of four men using four different voices called bassu, contra, boche and mesu boche. One of its characteristics is the deep and guttural timbre of the bassu and contra voices. It is performed standing in a close circle. The solo singers chants a piece of prose or a poem while the other voices form an accompanying chorus. Most practitioners live in the region of Barbagia and other parts of central Sardinia. Their art of singing is very much embedded in the daily life of local communities. Often it is performed spontaneously in local bars called su zilleri, but also at more formal occasions, such as weddings, sheepshearings, religious festivities or the Barbaricino carnival.

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Canto a tenore has developed within the pastoral culture of Sardinia. It represents a form of polyphonic singing performed by a group of four men using four different voices called bassu, contra, boche and mesu boche. One of its characteristics is the deep and guttural timbre of the bassu...

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