David Hykes

Visionary Composer-Singer and Artist

Founder, the Harmonic Presence work and Harmonic Chant

Contemplative Mentor & Seminar-Retreat Leader

About David Hykes

david-hykes-David Hykes is a visionary composer, singer, musician, recording artist, visual artist and teacher of contemplative music and meditation. He is founder of a contemplative music called Harmonic Chant and of the Harmonic Presence work, which blends music, meditation training and healing harmonization practices. A pioneer in new music, contemplative chant and healing sounds, he founded Harmonic Chant in New York in 1975, the year he also founded his legendary group, The Harmonic Choir, considered to be one of the world’s pre-eminent overtone ensembles. His 12 albums to date, including“Hearing Solar Winds,” one of the best-selling overtone albums of all time, are unique and subtle explorations of Harmonic Chant, Mantra, Sufi poetry and poetic texts, with instrumental accompaniment ranging from wind harp and Sufi nêy flute to tabla and zarb percussion, and even the gigantic bell in Boudhanath, Nepal. 

He was Artist-in-Residence for ten years at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York before moving to France, where he has been based since 1987. He has lead Harmonic Presence retreats since 1980 all over the world. His work relating music, meditation, mind and healing has led to presenting at the Dalai Lama’s Mind and Life Institute, and to receiving awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, UNESCO, the Edwards Foundation Arts Fund and the Rockefeller Foundation, among others, for his development of a global contemplative music of our time. His “sacred cinema” film music includes pieces for “Baraka,” and “The Tree of Life,” and many other films, and he was invited by revered incarnate lama Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche to contribute music to his feature film “Travellers and Magicians.” As a visual artist and filmmaker, he now explores the “Harmonic Visions,” transforming chanted sound into light and imagery, showing the unity of sound vibration and visual form.

Since 1981 he guides the Harmonic Presence Foundation.  In addition to his openness and contributions to avant-garde music currents in the USA, he was the first contemporary westerner to study and collaborate with musicians from Tibet, Tuva, and Mongolia, giving concerts in New York and with the Gyuto and Gyume Monks, and over the years, concert-presentations of Harmonic Chant offered to the Dharma in Nepal, in events with HH the Dalai Lama, and in France, the US and Canada. He was a close student and friend of the late Smt. Sheila Dhar, a wonderful North Indian raga singer and author.

David Hykes is a Dharma student since many years. He took refuge with Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, who gave him the name Shenpen Yeshe, “Serving the Primordial Wisdom that brings happiness to beings.” He has studies also with Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche and Tsoknyi Rinpoche. Since Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche’s request that David offer music to his film “Travellers and Magicians,” David tries to be present at his teachings whenever and wherever he can. Earlier in life, he completed nearly twenty years of spiritual studies in the Gurdjieff Foundations in New York, San Francisco, and Paris, as a student of two of Gurdjieff’s successors, Lord John Pentland and Dr. Michel de Salzmann. 

He currently divides his time between France, where he directs Pommereau, a music and meditation center near Paris, and the USA, where he teaches, performs and lectures on behalf of the Harmonic Presence Foundation, the first modern organization dedicated to contemplative tradition and the music of harmonic body, mind and heart.


  • yehudimenuhinDavid Hykes has opened a new dimension in music, bringing us the music of the spheres.  It is the music of overtones, which hold sway throughout the universe… As music, these wondrous sounds retain an extraordinary mystery, for they make every listener feel humble and yet part of the great Whole.

    Yehudi MenuhinViolinist, Conductor & Yogi

  • Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche“David Hykes’s music is haunting and transporting. It takes you some place like the Sahara desert, somewhere completely otherworldly.  It transports you to the Ancient Time.
 While searching for music for my film ‘Travellers and Magicians,’ I listened to so much music.
 But I always came back to David’s. From the moment I heard it, there was no doubt…”

    Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse RinpocheBuddhist Lama, Filmmaker & Writer

  • Dennis Lewis“Listening to the extraordinary music of David Hykes is like listening to the symphony of silence that lies at the heart of being. David’s music helps us to experience in a new yet ancient way that real “listening” requires not just a profound act of inner stillness and attention but also a deep welcoming of the wholeness of life, including all of its seeming contradictions and paradoxes.”

    Dennis LewisAuthor & Teacher

  • stephencope“Powerful stuff! David Hykes’ “Harmonic Meditations” are revelatory–in every good sense of the word. They evoke for us some ancient, half-remembered experience of aliveness that pulses beyond time, beyond place, beyond self; the very experience of pulsing life for which we long. Here is a language both altogether new, and as old as the planets.”

    Stephen CopeAuthor & Yogi

  • Lamasuryadas“David Hykes is an inspired musician whose ground breaking and enlightening spiritual harmonies I have only begun to contemplate in recent years. His music is ecstatic to be-hold and yet also contemplative, woven of the divine light and pure energy that dreams, prayers, and all beings, are made of.”

    Lama Surya DasBuddhist Teacher & Author



Harmonic Presence Work

P1020110Do you yearn to discover for yourself the depths of sound, vibration and awareness? Join David Hykes in the Harmonic Presence Work.

In the Harmonic Presence retreats-seminars, we work with primordial awareness of sound and vibration and the resonances of silence, space, light and sensation. We share deeply transforming practices in a restorative, creative and healing environment.

We work intensively with voice and awareness in connection with deep aspirations
for harmony, healing and wholeness. Working with finer and finer harmonics of listening, breath, silence, space, sensory awareness vibration and light, we can find meditative stability in the vast and ever-present “Ancient Time.”

In becoming quietly vibrant enough, we can better attune to the reality of “what is” at every level, from the “music of the spheres” to this life on Earth. By intensive practice of Harmonic Chant and by dedicated meditative practice, we can find peace in the body, loving-kindness in the heart, and light in the mind.

Discovered, developed and shared world-wide since 1975 by composer-singer and harmonic awareness teacher David Hykes, Harmonic Chant practices can help us attune to the deepest levels of harmony inside and out, through finer and finer octaves of sound, listening awareness, breath and resonance.  An original pioneer in the modern exploration of harmonic consciousness, David Hykes brings  to this work 42 years of discoveries and studies with  both Eastern and Western masters, musicians and scientists.


Upcoming Retreats, Concerts & Conferences

The Harmonic Visions

The Harmonic Vision are a visual representation of sound using a unique software created by David Hykes.  Each of the series is the manifestation of a specific meditation and is created through David Hykes’ Harmonic Chant.


email: harmonicpresence@gmail.com




France : +33 254 72 82 12