In other words, what many people have pointed out is probable true, i.e. that the timbre of the bass and the "contra" remind us of the bellows of the oxen or the bleating of the sheep while the soft voice recalls the whistling of the wind. The voice quartet is generally called "su tenore", but in some villages it is also called "cuncordu" "cussertu" "cuntrattu".
The tenors song is used to accompany serenades, dances and prayers.
  Choir Remunnu e Locu from Bitti
ImageChoir "Remunnu e Locu" from Bitti
Peter Gabriel
ImagePeter Gabriel
  One of its best expressions is the choir "Remunnu e Locu" from Bitti which has had a remarkable international success especially after its recording with Peter Gabriel's Real World and after having being included in the circuit of the Womad Festival. For a few years now the group which was formed twenty years ago, has been running a school attended by young students in order to keep alive this tradition which is deeply rooted in the province of Nuoro. Another interesting type of song, with only one voice, is the poetry of "CANTADORES" (singers): two or more poets, usually well-known and well-paid, improvise lines on a given theme (wine and water, life and death, poverty and wealth) in poetic competitions which take place all over the island. At every Saint's festival there are these competitions which date back a century.

Paolo Pillonca, a researcher and a scholar, has recently published a volume covering the hundred years of this tradition, which in the past, had distinguished interpreters such as Remundu Piras from Villanova Monteleone (who died in 1978 and can be perhaps regarded as the best), Barore Sassu from Banari, Antonio Cubeddu from Ozieri. Antonio Cubeddu was one of the many who took part in the first "in the square" poetic competition held in Sardinia, which took place in Ozieri in September 1896.

Luigi Lai

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