All about that Bass (and Baritone and Tenor)
January 12, 2021 7:00 AM   Subscribe

The rise of SeaShantyTok has reminded me that something that I love and haven't had enough of in recent years is men's choral music. Open to pretty much any genre, from Gregorian chant to modern A Cappella. Where should I go to hear deep booming voices blended in perfect harmony?
posted by firechicago to Media & Arts (20 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
 
The Maccabeats are a Jewish men's a cappella group. They have interesting videos, too.
posted by NotLost at 7:03 AM on January 12 [2 favorites]




you could go to the barbershop, where, i'm told, they sing. not well-versed on contemporary mens' acts, but the barbershop harmony society has a youtube channel to get you started.
n.b.: not sure barbershop is gonna be deep booming voices -- i think of it as characterized by twangy high harmonies -- although each group will certainly have bass voices. also, notably better in high-fidelity or live, for full breadth of closely-tuned overtone intoxication.
posted by 20 year lurk at 7:24 AM on January 12


I'm obsessed with this video of the King's Singers with countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński singing an arrangement of Purcell's Music for a While.

Once you're done with that, continue delving into the King's Singers.
posted by winterportage at 7:33 AM on January 12 [4 favorites]


also. the blind boys of alabama do some excellent harmony, sometimes a capella.
posted by 20 year lurk at 7:36 AM on January 12 [5 favorites]


The Persuasions Frankly A Capella is the BEST! Link is to google search for the album, and it looks like the songs are on YouTube.
posted by RobinofFrocksley at 7:50 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]


i forgot the 180 Gs. here's christianity is stupid from their homage to negativland.
posted by 20 year lurk at 8:07 AM on January 12


Slavyanka Russian Chorus is great! There are some Slavyanka videos on Youtube.

(It looks like they now include both men and women, but last time I saw them, they were all male voices, and I think most of the Youtube videos are all male.)
posted by kristi at 8:16 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]


Seconding the King's Singers recommendation above. See also Chanticleer and Cantus, two excellent professional ensembles.
posted by pingzing at 8:21 AM on January 12


Russian Orthodox Church singing .
Georgian men traditional singing.
posted by Oli D. at 9:08 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]


Welsh Miner's Choirs
posted by kalimac at 11:05 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]


You might enjoy the bass trio misty.
posted by Lexica at 11:24 AM on January 12


You might enjoy exploring the choral work of Orphei Drangar. I had the opportunity to see them live a couple of years ago and they are amazing. They are famous in choral circles, and enjoyed a moment of breakthrough "fame" outside of choral circles when The Singing Apes of Khao Yai got some MTV airplay.
posted by rekrap at 12:14 PM on January 12


An Icelandic hymn in a train station
posted by runincircles at 1:24 PM on January 12 [1 favorite]


There is the Alexandrov Ensemble - formally called "A. V. Alexandrov Academic Song and Dance Ensemble of the Russian Army". They were formed as the official men's choir of the Soviet Army during the Soviet era. They have published an extensive discography.
Here, they compete with the challenging hairstyles and footwear of the Leningrad Cowboys.
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 2:23 PM on January 12 [1 favorite]


There is the choir of the Valaam monastery. They have a unique tradition of singing.

There is the choir of King's College, Cambridge.
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 3:33 PM on January 12


Note: there is an ENTIRE FEATURE-LENGTH MOVIE of the Alexandrovs performing with the Leningrad Cowboys, not just that one Dylan cover.

It is better and worse than you can possibly imagine.
posted by ivan ivanych samovar at 3:38 PM on January 12 [1 favorite]


there is an ENTIRE FEATURE-LENGTH MOVIE of the Alexandrovs performing with the Leningrad Cowboys

I... had no idea! That is so awesome!
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 4:08 PM on January 12


It is glorious.

I could not easily find out who's streaming it right now, but our local library had the DVD (last year, at least, in the before times)
posted by ivan ivanych samovar at 4:38 PM on January 12


The Divine Liturgy of Komitas. (An Armenian composer.)

The Hilliard Ensemble are an all-male chorus specializing in renaissance music. While not especially 'booming', their sound is always sublime, and definitely checks out for 'perfect harmony.' Try their recording of some music by Ockeghem.

My favorite plain chant group is the Ensemble Organum. They will for sure get your booming on.

For a quite different vibe, there are many Gay Men's Choruses. Such as the Boston Gay Men's Chorus.
posted by bertran at 5:33 PM on January 12


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