Singing "unlike anything you've ever heard before"

This week on "60 Minutes," singer Tanya Tagaq performs a solo version of Inuit throat singing

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Last Updated May 5, 2019 7:33 PM EDT

A Tanya Tagaq concert is a singular event. Her performance is entirely improvised, so it can never be duplicated, and the sound is — in a word — unique.  

"She growls. She howls," said 60 Minutes' Nathalie Sommer, who produced a story about Tagaq on this week's broadcast. "It's been described as an exorcism, ethereal, wild, extreme. It's trippy."

A native of Canada's Arctic, Tagaq performs a modernized version of Inuit throat singing. Traditional throat singing was invented by women in igloos while the men were out hunting. It's a friendly competition, a call-and-response game.

Tagaq's performances combine both parts in one, along with some singing, some grunting, and some guitar.  

"We do a lot of music stories at 60 Minutes," Sommer said. "We've done pop stars. We do opera stars. But we knew this was not going to be your grandfather's 60 Minutes story."

Watch correspondent Jon Wertheim's profile of Tagaq here.

The video above was produced by Brit McCandless Famer and Will Croxton. It was edited by Will Croxton.

Video courtesy of Six Shooter Records and AUX TV/Blue Ant Media