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Making Merrye

Making Merrye

Ref: CDG1062

24 tracks 61 min
Click here to preview trk 8

Joyful medieval songs and dances

Livelu medieval music from England, France and Italy, from 'Mi very joye' to the 'Montard Brawl'. Period instruments and voices combine to create a complete musical portrait of the late medieval world.

Price    9.99

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Cheerful sounds and ringing melodies abound in this lovely collection of late-medieval music, compiled with the colourful cover image in mind. Bombards, shawms, lutes, harps and gitterns provide a rich programme of music, with songs and instrumental music from Spain, Italy, France and Britain.

1 Bear Dance
2 Pied du Cheval
3 Agincourt Carol
4 Quene Note
5 Montard Brawle
6 Mi very joye
7 Io no tango
8 Ductia IV
9 Scaramella
10 Alm redemptoris mater
11 Ein Welsh tanz
12 Der Hauff auff
13 Ductia V
14 Ductia VI
15 The Harpist
16 Estampie
17 Saltarello
18 Mirie it is
19 Worldes bliss
20 Ductia VII
21 My love's coming home
22 To Vigo's sea come haste
23 Lamento
24 Ductia VIII

Sara Stowe voice, pipe and tabor
Sharon Lindo pipes
Jon Banks voice, gittern, harp, dulcimer, percussion, shawm
Matthew Spring lute, gittern, hurdy-gurdy, percussion

The Oxford Girls' Choir Estampie
John Rowlands-Pritchard Worldes bliss
Michelene Wandor recorder

'To pleye on sundry Instrumentys,
On harpe, lut & on gyterne,
And to revelle at taverne…'
John Lydgate: The Pilgrimage of the Life of Man c.1430

The programme begins with the 'Bear Dance', played at the start by pipe and tabor (it's actually a very clever trick for a single person - Sara Stowe - to manage two instruments at once). She is joined by the hurdy-gurdy, with its unusual combination of insistent drones and superb rhythmic clarity. Finally the dulcimer joins in. This instrument is played by hammers hitting pre-tuned strings, which are laid out somewhat as if the instrument was a horizontal harp. Other instruments can also be heard on this album, from the small bagpipes, played by Sharon Lindo, to the common medieval line up of a variety of plucked string instruments. The first to be heard is the gittern, which joins the hurdy-gurdy early in track 5. This is a small instrument, a little like a lute. Its strings are played with a plectrum. Later we also hear the lute itself, and the medieval harp - a small, gentle instrument with a clear, singing tone.

Songs on the album come from all over Europe. 'Mi veri joye' is English. 'Scaramella' is Italian - and very cheerful. Tracks 21 and 22 are Spanish and the melody and text of track 18 are Scottish in origin. The 'Agincourt Carol' has French associations, while the two lute pieces (tracks 11 and 12) are from Neusidler's German tablature. The title 'Ductia' appears several times: these are medieval instrumental pieces of varying complexity and arranged here for a differing variety of instruments. The 'Estampie' and 'Saltarello' are different types of medieval dances, as are the 'brawles'. In between these exciting pieces there are some more reflective works involving the plucked instruments. 'Alma redemptoris mater' is dedicated to the Virgin Mary, an important figure in the spiritual lives of everybody in Europe before the religious upheavals of the Reformation in early Renaissance times.

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