"The greatest charm of the long song is that It's the music that’s nearest to nature. Or, In other words, the music itself is a beautiful image of the nature," China's famous musicologist Zhao Songguang.
in Mongolian, "Urtiln duu" /long song/ "Urtiin" means perpetual and "duu” means melody. In other words, the Urtiln duu is more than just "long." In fact, It's considered as the "living fossil" of the Mongolian people's music. Because it is widely believed that the Urtiln duu originated 2,000 years ago. Even it has been definitely been described In literary works since the thirteenth century.
The long song, by essence, is closely related to the grasslands; With melodious, soothing and sonorous rhythms, the music pays tribute to the vast prairie and the life people create on it. Horses, flocks and herds, camels, blue sky, white clouds, rivers and lakes are the main imagery of the long song.
Long Song, as it is known is not exactly long in duration but the syllables are stretched for a very long time. Sometimes, a 3-minute song could have just 5 syllables and the singer continues to sing it in the most melodious manner one could imagine.
A song as an educational tool
The long song is the kind of folk art that depends on oral inheritance. It has no fixed tempo but completely depends on the singers' understanding of the nature and nomadic life.
It is aimed to educate people as right people. Feast order and regime is different in all territories but it has similarity. In the feast, the Mongolian people sing folk long songs with symbolic and respectful content in accordance with the regular order and principle. The singers fully fasten knobs of the clothes, wear the hat evenly, thorax must be straight, vision is far, stand is straight and the singer must sing joyfully and calmly. If Khalkh Mongolian people begin the feast by horse - headed fiddle, they sing "Khuur magnai" song. If they begin with song not musical instrument, they sing feast song and aizam songs. In great holiday, state ceremony and events, songs such as "Turiin tovch", "Khuur magnai", "Id shonkhor" and "Tegsh tavan khusel" are sung.
There is singing method and regime for singers. The singers of folk long song, especially singer of aizam song must kindly lead himself/herself, well know national tradition and custom, respect song and be reputable among the public. In the ancient time, there were singers for palace, singers for khan and singers for lords, in addition to vocal power and repertory, singer's face, body, humanity, empathy, behavior and ethics was very important. The only kinds of song which the musical instrument follows its rhythm. Folk long song is sung with participation of national musical instruments such as horse - headed fiddle and flute. In listening to combination of folk song and horse - headed fiddle, melody of horse-headed fiddle follows the singer's song . The singers of folk song and musicians interacts with each other in artistic and emotional interaction. Musical instruments ensure beginning and right rhythm for the singers and supports the singers to keep certain level of tone.