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A sextet (or hexad) is a formation containing exactly six members. The former term is commonly associated with vocal ensembles (e.g. The King's Singers, Affabre Concinui) or musical instrument groups, but can be applied to any situation where six similar or related objects are considered a single unit.[1][2]

Many musical compositions are named for the number of musicians for which they are written. If a piece is written for six performers, it may be called a "sextet". Steve Reich's "Sextet" is written for six percussionists.

In jazz music a sextet is any group of six players, usually containing a drum set (bass drum, snare drum, hi-hat, ride cymbal), string bass or electric bass, piano, and various combinations of the following or other instruments: guitar, trumpet, saxophone, clarinet, trombone.

In heavy metal and rock music, a sextet typically contains, but is not restricted to, a lead vocalist, two guitarists, a bassist, drummer, and keyboardist.

String sextets[edit]

See String sextet

Piano sextets[edit]

See Piano sextet

Sextets in rock, heavy metal, and hip hop[edit]

Other sextets[edit]


  1. ^ "Sextet - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary". 2012-08-31. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  2. ^ "sextet - definition of sextet by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia". Retrieved 2013-09-15.