In Celebration of the Human Voice - The Essential Musical Instrument

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Cambridge Singers
Flora Gave Me Fairest Flowers   

Song NameComposer
Hark, all ye lovely saints aboveThomas Weelkes
Though Amaryllis dance in greenWilliam Byrd
Round about in a fair ringJohn Bennet
Adieu, ye city-prisoning towersThomas Tomkins
Flora gave me fairest flowersJohn Wilbye
Sweet Suffolk owlThomas Vautor
As Vesta was from Latmos hill descendingThomas Weelkes
LullabyeWilliam Byrd
This sweet and merry month of MayWilliam Byrd
Now Is The Month Of MayingThomas Morley
A little pretty bonny lassJohn Farmer
Fyer, fyer!Thomas Morley
Too much I once lamentedThomas Tomkins
My bonny lass she smilethThomas Morley
Ha ha! This world doth passThomas Weelkes
Quick, quick, away, dispatch!Michael East
Dainty fine birdOrlando Gibbons
Come again! Sweet love doth now inviteJohn Dowland
Mother, I Will have a husbandThomas Vautor
Draw on, sweet nightJohn Wilbye
Sleep, fleshly birthRobert Ramsey
Weep, weep, mine eyesJohn Wilbye
Death hath deprived meThomas Weelkes
The silver swanOrlando Gibbons
Adieu, sweet AmaryllisJohn Wilbye

Directed by John Rutter

The sixteenth-century madrigal was an Italian form. The term 'madrigal' was loosely applied to a wide variety of music, but generally denoted a polyphonic setting for four or more voices of an amorous or pastoral text which was closely depicted in the music. Thomas Morely transplanted the form into England in the 1590s; this marked the beginning of the brief but brilliant flowering of the English madrigal. Between the 1590s and the early 1620s, twenty composers published a total of 36 books of madrigals, after which the form virtually disappeared. Some of these composers, such as Morely and Weelkes, followed the Italian model closely; others, such as Byrd and Gibbons, mostly stayed with the simpler English form of the consort song, where the tune remains in one voice, word-painting is not used, and strophic form is preferred to the continuous structure of the madrigal proper. Among the twenty-one items selected for this recording there are examples of several types of piece, ranging from true Italianate madrigals such as Too much I once lamented, via more popular 'balletts' such as Fyer, fyer!, to the simple part-songs like A little pretty bonny lass. The variety, imagination, and inspired blending of poetry and music characteristic of the best of the 'English Madrigal School' afford a particular kind of delight in performance, shared equally by singer and listener.

Item code: 6976C | 1 CD | $9.95 ON SALE $4.95 add item to cart
Choral | A Cappella | Mixed | England

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