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The Business Of Angels - English Recorder Music From The Stuart Era

Melville / Harris / Jackson / Medicky / Morton
Release Date: 02/22/2011 
Label:  Pipistrelle   Catalog #: 1110   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  George Frideric HandelDaniel PurcellSolomon EcclesLuis Mercy,   ... 
Performer:  Borys MedickyNadina Mackie JaksonLucas HarrisAlison Melville,   ... 
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews



THE BUSINESS OF ANGELS: English Recorder Music from the Stuart Era Alison Melville (rec); Lucas Harris (lt, gtr); Nadina Mackie Jackson (bsn); Borys Medicky (hpd); Joëlle Morton (b vl); (period instruments) PIPISTRELLE MUSIC PIP1110 (57:52)


Music by HANDEL, PURCELL, ECCLES, MERCY, PAISIBLE, FINGER, TOPHAM, TOLLETT, CORELLI, and ANON


The 17th and 18th centuries were a golden age for Read more arrangements of everything for home use, and this ad hoc ensemble has had the great idea of collecting a number of them using recorder as the melody and/or division instrument. Queen Anne was the last of the Stuarts, allowing the program to begin with an arrangement of Handel’s overture to Rinaldo (1711).


Arrangements for home use were frequently just melody and bass lines, sometimes figured, sometimes not, and the melody was often said to be “suitable for violins, flutes, or oboes.” Handel’s Rinaldo was a hot item, for instance, and John Walsh published household arrangements of it the same year it played in the theater. All of the many pieces on this recording have similar origins. About the turn of the century, Arcangelo Corelli achieved enormous popularity in London, largely through such arrangements of his concerti for recorders and accompaniment. The present program closes with one of his most memorable, the variations on “La Follia.” In between, we get a number of small pieces, some arranged into larger sets.


It is a pleasure to note that Alison Melville’s recorders make a cheerful noise. Most of the accompaniments seem to be with guitar, and Lucas Harris plays with enthusiasm. If I sound hestitant on the matter, the fact is that the rather metallic sound of his Baroque guitar is rather like that of a bright harpsichord and I am not always sure I can tell the difference. To be sure, in the Corelli he uses an archlute, which is more what we are used to hearing these days in this music. One must also note the bumptious presence of Nadina Mackie Jackson’s bassoon. Only Borys Medicky’s harpsichord seems in the background. This ad hoc group seems to have no collective name, but they play well together. One thing a program like this does is to suggest strongly at how high a level home music-making was expected to be 300 years ago.


The recording is clear, bright, and rather close, though there seems to be sufficient reverberance in the venue. One annoying feature, however, is that final notes are cut off dead as soon as they cease to sound. The program is unduplicated, but for another view of the Corelli variations, listen to that by Maurice Steger on Harmonia Mundi ( Fanfare 34:1).


FANFARE: Alan Swanson
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Works on This Recording

1. Rinaldo, HWV 7: Overture by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1711; London, England 
2. Solo no 2 by Daniel Purcell
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
3. Division on a Ground "Bellamira" by Solomon Eccles
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
4. Sonata no 6, Op. 2 by Luis Mercy
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
5. A Song, Sence Other Beautys Charmes Your Hart by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
6. Now the Toryes the Gloryes by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
7. The Complete Flute Master: Minuet by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
8. Sonata for Recorder and Basso Continuo no 6 by James Paisible
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
9. Paul's Steeple by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1706 
10. Brisk Ayre by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
11. By M. Eccles in Henry ye fourth by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
12. Sonata for Recorder and Basso Continuo in G minor, Op. 3 no 4 by Gottfried Finger
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
13. Sonata for Recorder and Basso Continuo, Op. 2 no 2 by William Topham
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
14. Divisions on a Ground by Thomas Tolett
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
15. Jigg by Mr. Forster by Anonymous
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
16. Slow Ayre by James Hart
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
17. Sonatas (12) for Violin and Basso Continuo, Op. 5: no 12 in D minor "La Follia" by Arcangelo Corelli
Performer:  Borys Medicky (Harpsichord), Nadina Mackie Jakson (Bassoon), Lucas Harris (Lute/Guitar),
Alison Melville (Recorder), Joëlle Morton (Bass Viola Da Gamba)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1700; Rome, Italy 

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