Wolf Tones

Many people have misconceptions of or don’t understand what a wolf tone is. I found a student cello that provides an extreme example.

Wikipedia’s definition – “A wolf tone, or simply a “wolf”, is produced when a played note matches the natural resonating frequency of the body of a musical instrument, producing a sustaining sympathetic artificial overtone that amplifies and expands the frequencies of the original note, frequently accompanied by an oscillating beating (due to the uneven frequencies between the natural note and artificial overtone) which may be likened to the howling of the animal. A similar phenomenon is the wolf interval, usually between E flat and G sharp, of the various non-circulating temperaments.”

Here is a video of an open G without a wolf and a fingered A with the wolf.

Wolf Tone

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