Singing Rounds is Fun -- Learn Israeli Round, Hinneh Mah Tov
Singing rounds is a great way for your students to get practice harmonizing, and also to get accustomed to foreign languages.
This song, Hinneh mah tov, lets them do both.
This free vocal sheet music, Hinneh Mah Tov, is a vigorous Israeli piece sung in Hebrew. (There is disagreement about the source of this song. Note: this is NOT the version sung in the movie "Raid on Entebbe.")
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
Like many rounds, Hinneh Mah Tov has a comfortable range of only an octave.
The melodic line contrasts rapid percussive repeated notes in Part 1 with a soaring, legato curve of melody in Part 2. There is also a quick moment of TRITONE harmony, emphasizing the Hebrew flavor of this singing round. Very fun.
Tritones (augmented 4th or diminished 5th intervals) are inherently difficult to sing in tune.
Therefore, I always chat with my voice students a bit about this, and I enjoy telling them this story (probably NOT TRUE)...
Being inherently difficult to keep in tune, it was thought in the Middle Ages that the tritone should be avoided in singing, even being called "diabolus in musica" (the devil in the music!).
I think that this is one of those stories concocted hundreds of years later... nevertheless, tritone intervals are interesting, and I hope that the anecdote helps my students remember this sound.
I have been told that the meaning of the words translates something like, "How pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity," which paraphrases Psalm 133 from the Old Testament of the Bible.
If you would like to try chords in the background, Cm, Fm, and G7 work well, like this:
I said this song is vigorous. Well, the way we sang it at church, and the way I have my students sing it, is fast-paced indeed!
However, the only 2 performances of it I have come across on YouTube seem more in the nature of DIRGES. Those two performances are now gone.
Thanks to Professor David Smith of Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, for introducing this lovely song to our church during a visit to Alaska.
Round-singing is useful training for your vocal students; I like to do them along with vocal warm-ups, at the beginning of class.
The download link for Hinneh Mah Tov:
Singing round Hinneh Mah Tov
Joy to the World lyrics, guitar tabs, & sheet music for Christmas! Piano solos, an ensemble, & guitar tabs.
Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep is a childhood prayer, now a song to sing and play for your beginners.
Wexford Carol lyrics & sheet music, in time for Christmas! A very elegant arrangement in several keys, plus new easy arrangements for beginners!
Merry Merry Christmas singing round is fast & pretty, and you may have never heard it before! Super simple lyrics. Get the free sheet music here.
Canon sheet music for beginners. Maybe THE EASIEST CANON arrangement in the world, with broken chords! Seven different versions, & a duet arrangement.
Songs Old & Songs New
All the first-year material I give my beginner students.
Piano keyboard sheets, scales, chords, note-reading exercises, and over 256 pages of music!
Queen Esther in the Bible
This beautiful song book for piano & voice "Esther, For Such a Time as This", available as a digital download, tells the riveting story of the time when Jews in ancient Persia faced a foe named Haman, and how a brave young queen risked her life to save her people.
A good choice for a singing story-teller, an operatic group, a short theater production, or a class of children!
This book is also available from Amazon as a paperback.
Just the Black Keys
This book is available as a digital download from this site. Visit this page to see some free examples from the book.
It is also available from Amazon as a paperback!
This is the perfect easy start for little pianists.
And when they start reading white-key notes on the staff, this is a fun easy resource to say each week, "Choose a new black-key song at home this week and figure it out to show me next lesson!" They will be spending more time at the piano.
The Adventures of Tonsta
A perfect read aloud storybook
for little boys or girls.
The Adventures of Tonsta highlight the travels of a very young boy with a good heart, who goes about helping folk in trouble.
With a red cap on his head and a sack of tools slung over his shoulder, Tonsta seems to meet people in distress wherever he goes.
Lots of trolls in this book - including one who gives him a Christmas gift!
Available at Amazon
... I watched your video "Wondrous Love" with your eight gals - Magnificent! So refreshing to see good harmonies sung a capella these days; it seems to be rare!
This is an absolutely wonderful site!
As a voice and piano teacher looking for enrichment material for beginners, I have found your collections to be comprehensive and purposeful. It is clear that you are a wonderful musician and educator. Thank you!
Do you have a funny story about this music, or does it remind you of something you'd like to share with other readers? Do you have a question? I'd love to hear it!
Please note that all comments are moderated, and will not appear until I have approved them. Also, IF YOU ARE ASKING FOR MUSIC THAT IS NOT IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN, YOUR REQUEST WILL BE IGNORED. That's pretty much any music written in the last 75 years...
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About the Author
Hi, I'm Dana! (Say that like "Anna".) I'm the owner of Music-for-Music-Teachers.com, and a newer site, SingTheBibleStory.com.
Like some of you, I've been playing the piano since early childhood, and have added a few other instruments along the way, plus an interest in arranging and composing music.
You can find out more about me and the reason for this website at my About Me page.