Renaissance Music for Guitar Including Ancient Music from Ireland and Scotland Newly Revised

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"Renaissance Music for Guitar" contains 34 pieces

  1. Dance of the Washerwoman - Hans Neusidler • This is the tune that started me playing the lute. I heard a recording of Julian Bream performing this, and I never forgot it. I remember the day I found the sheet music. I played it over, and over, and over. It's one of the reasons I bought a lute. In addition to the first cut on the CD, I have also included an example of me playing this tune on the lute at cut 35.

  2. I Lie Alone - Anonymous • This is a beautiful lute piece from Scotland. It's extraordinary, and fairly easy to play.
  3. Ballet - Michael Praetorius • This Ballet is from a book published in the renaissance titled "Terpsichore". The dances were collected by Michael Praetorius. This is an arrangement, as the original was set for five voices. It's often played by recorders
  4. Robinson's May - Thomas Robinson • Thomas Robinson was a lutenist/composer in the renaissance. He published a book titled "Schoole of Musick" which contains many lute pieces and also instructions for singing.
  5. Packington's Pound - Anonymous • This is actually two versions combined into one. The first version has an unknown composer. The second is attributed to Thomas Cutting. Many versions exist and it is said to be one of the most popular pieces of the renaissance.
  6. Canaries - Anonymous • One of the interesting things about renaissance lute music is the number of countries in which it was popular. This piece is another from Scotland. It's really lovely, though quite short, so I wrote two variations for it.
  7. Medieval Dance - Anonymous • This selection is earlier than most pieces in this book. The harmonies are simple and the piece is haunting.
  8. Kemp's Jig - Anonymous • Will Kemp was bet a hundred pounds that he couldn't jig a hundred miles. As the story goes, he won the bet and this tune was written to celebrate the event. Kemp's Jig is a well known piece from the renaissance originally written for lute.
  9. Kathrine Bardi - Anonymous • I just love the music from Scotland for the lute. The harmonies are charming and the melodies addictive.
  10. Greensleeves I - Anonymous • It is amazing that a piece could survive all this time and still retain its popularity. I added a variation to make it a little longer.
  11. Greensleeves II - Anonymous • There were a few popular versions of Greensleeves during the renaissance. This one in 4/4 was actually more popular than the previous one that we are more familiar with.
  12. La Volta - Michael Praetorius • A "Volta" or "Volte" is really more a type of piece than a specific piece. This one is another that is from the Praetorius "Terpsichore" collection. It's one of my favorites.
  13. Duo - Miguel de Fuenllana • This music has just two voices. It's quite syncopated and you can hear the imitation of the bass in the treble. I find it to be very interesting and fun to play.
  14. Courante - Michael Praetorius • This is the last of the Praetorius pieces included in this book. I felt this was another tune that needed a variation to fill it out. I love this little dance.
  15. Christ Has Risen - Hans Judenkunig • Sometimes I will come across a piece of music that is relatively easy but powerful. This is one of those pieces.
  16. Bransle charlotte - Thomas Arbeau • Thomas Arbeau published a book during the renaissance title "Orchesography." In that book is a splendid collection of melodies, plus instructions for the dances that accompany them. This piece had to be harmonized as the original was just a single melody line. Since it was short, I added two variations. Writing variations for melodies was quite popular during the renaissance.
  17. Bransle - Anonymous • A Bransle (pronounced brawl) is a French dance. This one in particular is simple but haunting. I wrote a variation since the tune is short..
  18. O Venus Bant - Alexander Agricola • This is another medieval melody. I harmonized it and then wrote a variation. I find it quite a bit of fun to play.
  19. Daphne - Anonymous • Daphne is from an early collection of recorder music. I harmonized the melody and since I liked it so much, again wrote a variation. I see some similarity between this and Greensleeves.
  20. Canaries II - Anonymous • In this piece we had to tune the 6th string down to D because it's a lute piece and many renaissance lutes had at least 7 courses (pairs of strings). This note could then be played as an open string. It's nice to have the lower range in this tune.
  21. Fayne Would I wed - Richard Farnaby • The Fitzwilliam Virginal Book is a huge collection of music written for (not surprisingly) the Virginal. This instrument was a precursor to the harpsichord, but smaller and without as much volume. I loved this piece by Richard Farnaby, and it went quite naturally on the guitar.
  22. Haulberrys - Pierre Attaingnant • The majority of the pieces in this book are arranged with a normal guitar tuning, or with a low D, which is a common change of tuning for the guitar. Many of these tunes are original lute music and it often makes the pieces much easier to play if we retune the guitar so the intervals of the strings are like that of the lute. If you have trouble with the fact that the third string is now an F#, then you can read the tablature and the pieces should be fairly easy to learn. This tune is pleasantly syncopated and an interesting example of renaissance music written specifically for the lute.
  23. Fantasia - Anonymous • The renaissance Fantasia was a precursor to the fugue, which was a popular form later in the baroque period. I remember learning this tune years ago. It took at least a week for me to make any sense of this music. It will be easier for you now because of the enclosed CD. This is really a phenomenal piece. I love the imitation between the voices.
  24. Mr. Dowland's Midnight - John Dowland • Often there are several sources for a piece of lute music. Mr. Dowland's Midnight had only one, a book titled "Margaret Board's Lute Book," which was only discovered in the last 30 years. Think of what it would have been like to open this book and play a piece of John Dowland's that had not been heard for more than 400 years.
  25. Alman - Robert Johnson • Robert Johnson wrote music for Shakespeare's plays and held down several jobs at once during the renaissance. He was well paid and must have been quite the musician. This is a lovely, sweet piece that shows off his use of multiple voices.
  26. Der Judentanz - Hans Judenkunig • This piece is lively and exciting and not too hard to play. Near the end of the CD there is also an example of me playing this tune on the lute.
  27. Ronde Tielman Susato • This tune has always fascinated me. I just love it. I first heard it by a renaissance ensemble and just had to play it. There is a simple version by Hans Neusidler which I have included, but it wasn't enough. So I made an arrangement of Susato's version of the piece. The latter is from a collection called "Danserye."
  28. Ronde II - Tielman Susato • Here is another example of a short Ronde by Susato. It can withstand many repeats.
  29. Lute dance - Allan Alexander • Eventually I am looking for some sounds that I can't find the music for. The only alternative is to write a piece, and this is an example of the sort of piece that I really like. It's syncopated and a pleasure to play.
  30. Ricercare - Francesco da Milano • Francesco da Milano was one of the most significant composers of the renaissance. He wrote many Ricercare in which the melodies are imitated. This is one of my favorites. He was quite adept at utilizing syncopation.
  31. Merry Ronde - Allan Alexander • This was another piece that I wrote when I was seeking something that I just couldn't quite find elsewhere.
  32. Fantasia - Alonso Mudarra • If it's possible for me to have a favorite piece from the renaissance, this is it. Alonso Mudarra never wrote anything else that resembles this tune, and it really remains a "one of a kind" piece from the early fifteen hundreds.
  33. Two Bransles - Jean Baptiste Besard • These are two dances that are from a large volume of lute music titled "Thesaurus Harmonicus." You may have heard them before as Resphigi used them as a source on which he based a part of the three suites titled "Ancient Airs and Dances."
  34. Lady Gay's Alman - Allan Alexander • This is really a sweet syncopated piece. Since it was written by me for the lute, the lute tuning makes it much easier to play. I perform this one on the lute on the CD. It has such a pleasant sound on the lute... and who knows, maybe someday you too will play both the lute and the guitar.
  35. Finale - Albert Dlugoraj • This is a piece from Poland, and like the Mudarra Fantasia, it stands alone. It uses only the first three frets, and the first five strings. It is really an amazing composition. I love the way it sounds on the lute and the guitar, but I choose to include the lute version on this recording.


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Presented in both Tablature and Music Notation

The music is presented in both music notation and guitar TAB (for people that do not read music). The music notation is clear and crisp. It contains complete clear fingerings for the guitar. These will help you to learn the tunes quickly whether you depend on the tablature or the music.

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Comes With a Compact Disc of the Pieces Performed by Allan Alexander

The CD, played by Allan Alexander, gives the musician the advantage of being able to hear how these songs can be played and will make the learning process easier. This is a high quality Digital recording (DDD). In addition to helping the player become familiar with the music, it will also be a source of listening pleasure. The CD is almost 70 minutes in length.

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A High Quality Collection of Music The Renaissance and Medieval Times including Ancient Music from Ireland and Scotland.

Renaissance Music for Guitar is a book that will appeal to many types of guitarists. First, the book provides a quick overview of the history of the guitar and lute, plus examples of early tablature for the lute. For the intermediate student who wants to build up their repertoire with high quality pieces while exploring renaissance music, the book is perfect. Most of the pieces are readily accessible by an intermediate student. These are tunes you will want to play over and over, so learning them is a pleasurable experience. For the professional that is looking to expand their repertoire for jobs, this book is ideal. Allan has played professionally for years and understands the constant need for new material. Although most of these pieces are readily accessible to the professional, they are very high quality and will withstand repeated performance. The book comes with an optional CD. This Compact Disc contains almost 70 minutes of digitally mastered music. All the pieces in the book are performed by the author, a few of them on the lute. This is important. It's an easy way to find the music that you like, and at the same time, it speeds the learning process.

Book $15.95 Book/CD $22.95

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