what are your favorite tunes?

  1. billkilpatrick
    ... what are your favorite early music recordings?
  2. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Well, I've already posted my #1 over in the Classical forum a few days ago: "The Bones Of All Men" by Philip Pickett and Richard Thompson. I've also enjoyed a lot of what the Broadside Band and Ensemble Unicorn have recorded. Generally, I think I prefer old dance music over organ music and vocal music. I have a problem with most classically-trained voices, and I am not at all convinced that this is a congenial approach for anything pre-18th century.

  3. billkilpatrick
    couldn't agree more about the classically-trained voice - the brittan/pears, "lied" approach is totally misplaced - imho. sting's treatment of dowland was a breath of fresh air (aire?) as well. also agree on the dance tunes - my favorite.
  4. bratsche
    Nothing against classically trained voices per se - they certainly have their uses. But, Bill, I enjoyed Sting's Dowland too (never before having listened to him on anything else). I couldn't believe how many commenting snobs tried to make anyone who liked it feel "oh so unenlightened" with their constant berating and panning of him - thing is, when I listen to the "snob approved" singers' versions, oftentimes it is difficult to understand Dowland's words at all. I thought for a long time that it was just me.

  5. billkilpatrick
    i couldn't understand the negative reaction to sting's "dowland" either. from what i gathered, most of the criticism seemed to be that he wasn't like everyone else. envy, do you think?

    having said i didn't like the "lied" approach to the repertoire, i also have to say that kathleen ferrier's voice gives me goose-bumps.
  6. billkilpatrick
    i find most of my favorite early music tunes on youtube - dance tunes mostly and usually played or sung in an informal, "folk" style with just voice or solo instrument - http://www.youtube.com/user/Luthval - http://www.youtube.com/user/wwelti - in particular.

    the discs i listen to most are:

    - "16th.cent. italian and french dance music" - great compilation under the direction of michael morrow, boston skyline BSD123
    - "blow the wind southerly" - kathleen ferrier, decca 433475-2
    - "la lira d'espéria" - jordi savall, astrée auvidis, E 8547

    i've got 2 cd's called "istanpitta" and "istanpitta II" from a group calling themselves "new york's ensemble for early music" - lyrichord discs, LEMS 8016 and LEMS 8022 ... but they lean heavily on the woodwind instruments and i mostly use them for reference.

    there's also a group here in italy called "micrologus" who make wonderful music - i have several of their earlier recordings, all of which are "burned" onto blank cd's with no liner notes.
  7. Simen Kjaersdalen
    Simen Kjaersdalen
    As a Norwegian, I have to mention Rolf Lislevand, that is a master of all plucked instruments, from the madolin up to the big lutes. He's maybe at his best when playing baroque-guitar, Sanz and Santa Cruz. Those recordings are among the most ecstatic that's made.

    Biber's Rosary Sonatas played by Andrew Manze is another favourite. I think that the Passagalia for unaccompanied violin is one of the greatest solo-pieces from the baroque, second only to the Chaconne by J.S. Bach.
  8. Gelsenbury
    There seems to be a bit of an interest in early music in Germany. My personal sociological theory on this is that it does what some breeds of folk music achieve in Britain and Ireland, by combining a proud musical tradition with a very current and vibrant "blessing of cool". Everything that I'm aware of, which could be more accurately called "German folk music", seems to lack either or both of those qualities. Different musicians seem to approach this in different ways. Some experiment with medieval moods for otherwise fairly modern music, some try to recreate with historical accuracy.

    I have a nice CD called "Tanzmusik um 1600", on which a group called Collegium Terpsichore plays a variety of early-ish dance tunes. Praetorius, Widmann, Schein and Haussmann are given as the composers. I like this music because it alludes to German classical music but has a down-to-earth, folksy quality that the former doesn't have. I can't put this in musical terms, but that honest simplicity attracts me to early music generally.
  9. billkilpatrick
    first early music cd i ever bought was a collection of "tanzmusik der renaissance" and "des fruhbarok" by this group (dir. josef ulsamer) with konrad ragossong playing lute. "collegium terpsichore" in youtube's search engine produced a few recordings - nice ... too nice for my taste - i prefer an even folky-er approach to this music.

    have you heard a cd called "monch von saltzburg - secular songs" by a group called "ensemble fur fruhe musik augsburg" (augsburg early music ensemble)? the lyrics elude me but it has a wonderful tune called "caldy valdy."
  10. Gelsenbury
    Bill, I understand what you mean about the Collegium Terpsichore pieces. There are earthier tunes. But that CD is still my favourite at the moment. The other recordings you mention could potentially join the circle of favourites, but I don't know them.
  11. catmandu2
    My current favorites are:

    Eduardo Paniagua - Danza Medievales Espanolas
    Guy Robert and Perceval - L'Art de Luth au Moyen Age
    Hespèrion XXI/Jordi Savall - Orient-Occident

    There are many lovely tunes on these--just obtained them a few weeks ago so I haven't yet learned more than a few of them. Eventually, I'd like to learn to play about half of the material on these albums. I'm very interested in the Middle-eastern/European cross-pollination
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