Hans Jürgen Kürsch, better known as Hansi Kürsch (born 10 August 1966 in Lank-Latum/Meerbusch, Germany) is a German singer, bass guitarist, and songwriter, best known for being the co-founder, lead vocalist, co-composer, and lyricist of power metal band Blind Guardian. He was also the bassist in Blind Guardian until the 1998 album Nightfall in Middle-Earth. He also provides lead vocals for the band Demons and Wizards.
A signature of Kürsch's songwriting is his practice of overdubbing his own voice multiple times in complex, overlapping harmonies on his recordings, creating the atmosphere of a huge choir. The track "Chant" on the first Demons and Wizards album is vocal only, in the style of a traditional Gregorian Chant; Kürsch's is the only voice on the song.
Kürsch's lyrics revolve around various themes prevalent in the power metal genre, including medieval fantasy, J.R.R. Tolkien, religious/mythological tales, and legends/stories, both his own and from the literary world. His lyrics in the first Demons and Wizards album tackle even various themes, whereas "Touched by the Crimson King" was based primarily off different fantasy novels.
Kürsch has also recorded two albums for his side project with Jon Schaffer of Iced Earth, Demons and Wizards.
- Demons and Wizards - Demons and Wizards (2000)
- Demons and Wizards - Touched by the Crimson King (2005)
Although mostly known for being a clean singer nowadays, his early technique made use of a harsher, "screaming" technique. Kürsch can be heard using similar, more aggressive, technique while singing guest vocals for Heaven Shall Burn's cover of "Valhalla."
Hansi has done guest vocals on the following albums, in the following songs (listed chronologically):
- Gamma Ray - Land of the Free (1995) - Farewell
- Grave Digger - Tunes of War (1996, backing vocals only)
- Nepal - Manifiesto (1997) - Besando La Tierra, Estadio Chico
- Iron Savior - Iron Savior (1997) - For The World
- Edguy - Vain Glory Opera (1998) - Out of Control, Vain Glory Opera
- Grave Digger - Excalibur (1999, backing vocals only)
- Therion - Deggial (2000) - Flesh of the Gods
- Rage - Unity (2002, backing vocals only)
- Angra - Temple of Shadows (2004) - Winds of Destination
- Ljosalfar - Ljosalfar - Forevermoor
- Nuclear Blast All-Stars - Into The Light (2007) - Slaves To The Desert
- Ayreon - 01011001 (2008) - credited as Celtic Cross symbol: Age Of Shadows, Beneath The Waves, Newborn Race, The Fifth Extinction, Unnatural Selection, River of Time, The Sixth Extinction
- Dreamtone & Iris Mavraki's Neverland - Reversing Time (2008) - To Lose The Sun
- Van Canto - Hero (2008) - Take to the Sky
- Aneurysm - Shades (2008) - Reflection
- The Arrow - Lady Nite (2009) - Never Say Never
- Rage - Strings to a Web Bonus DVD (Live at Wacken Open Air 2009) (2010) - Set This World on Fire, All I Want, Invisible Horizons
- Solar Fragment - In Our Hands (2011) - Inside the Circle
- Grave Digger - Ballad of Mary (2011) - Rebellion 2010
- Grave Digger - Rebellion - The Clans Are Still Marching 2011 Live
- Heaven Shall Burn - Veto (2013) - Valhalla
- Maegi - Skies Fall (2013) - Those We've Left Behind
- Iced Earth - Plagues of Babylon (2014) - Among the Living Dead
- The Unguided - Fragile Immortality (2014) - Deathwalker
- Doro - The 30th Anniversary Show in Duesseldorf (2014) Live - Rock Till Death
- Disforia - The Age of Ether (2014) - The Dying Firmament
- Vexillum - Unum (2015) - The Sentenced: Fire and Blood
- In Extremo - Quid Pro Quo (2016) - Roter Stern
- Hansen & Friends - XXX-Three Decades in Metal (2016) - Follow The Sun
- The Dwarves PC GAME - The Dwarves Soundtrack (2016) - Children of the Smith
- Ayreon - The Source (2017) as The Astronomer
- "Guest Musicians". New Ayreon Album. Retrieved 29 December 2016.