Blue and fin whales (BalaenopteramusculusandB. physalus) produce very intense, long, patterned sequences of infrasonic sounds. The acoustic characteristics of these sounds suggest strong selection for signals optimized for very long‐range propagation in the deep ocean as first hypothesized by Payne and Webb in 1971. This hypothesis has been partially validated by very long‐range detections using hydrophone arrays in deep water. Humpback songs recorded in deep water contain units in the 20–l00 Hz range, and these relatively simple song components are detectable out to many hundreds of miles. The mid‐winter peak in the occurrence of 20‐Hz fin whale sounds led Watkins to hypothesize a reproductive function similar to humpback (Megapteranovaeangliae) song, and by default this function has been extended to blue whale songs. More recent evidence shows that blue and fin whales produce infrasonic calls in high latitudes during the feeding season, and that singing is associated with areas of high productivity where females congregate to feed. Acoustic sampling over broad spatial and temporal scales for baleen species is revealing higher geographic and seasonal variability in the low‐frequency vocal behaviors than previously reported, suggesting that present explanations for baleen whale sounds are too simplistic.