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Je voy le bon tens venir / Lazarevitch, Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien

Les Musiciens De Saint-julien / Lazarevitch
Release Date: 05/14/2013 
Label:  Alpha Productions   Catalog #: 189   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  AnonymousBaude CordierSolageJacob Senleches,   ... 
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



JE VOY LE BON TENS VENIR: Polyphonies & Dances From Around 1400 François Lazarevitch, cond; Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien ALPHA 189 (66:02 Text and Translation)


Selections by ANON, CORDIER, SOLAGE, SENLECHES, CICONIA, M. DA PERUGIA, DE LA HALLE


This album for the most part catches a literary tradition in decline, and the lengthy heyday of a musical one.


The literary tradition Read more is that of the energetic shepherd Robin and his coy shepherdess-sweetheart Marion, whose origin is ascribed to the Gascon Marcabru, one of the earliest troubadours. (In Music of the Troubadors , Elizabeth Aubrey states that he flourished around 1129–1149. Of 44 extant song texts of his, four survive with their melodies.) Marcabru in effect created a game of social and sexual interaction, one in which the pastoral pair either address one another, or the singer engages in dialogue with one of them—often as a knight flirting with Marion. This allowed for a range of reactions that, while embracing the pastoral myth (which would come to its height six centuries later), avoided the far more formulaic one of courtly love. Marcabru’s structure was open-ended enough to become immensely popular. (It would cross to England in its later years, finding its greatest literary success in the form of an ironically incomplete play by Ben Jonson, The Sad Shepherd , and in its gradual folding into the Robin Hood legend. That’s where Maid Marion comes from.) Not everything on this release relies upon Robin and Marion, but they do form a recurring theme throughout the program.


The musical tradition in turn is the so-called formes fixes , a group of forms for secular vocal music that stayed in use for nearly two centuries. These were the ballade, the rondeau, and the virelai, each with its own structure built upon repetition and variation. On this recording, we have four ballades, three rondeaus, and nine virelais; and although the liner notes lay out very specific patterns for each, in practice they varied greatly. (The ballade is listed as AAB or AABB, for instance, but one not included on this record, Dufay’s subtle Resveillies vous et faites chiere lye , follows AaBC.) There are also instrumental pieces, along with a vigorous, earlier motet—its three parts sung simultaneously to three different texts, as was the style of the day—and a chace , one of those exuberant canons that would spawn programmatic pieces over several hundred years in everything from madrigals about love to imitations of the confusion of war.


I previously wrote about François Lazarevitch and his ensemble, Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien, that they were one of those early music performing groups who “like two others in the Alpha stable, Le Poème Harmonique and Les Witches, combine classical and folk traditions in the performance of ‘lowbrow’ airs and dances.” That was in reference to a recording of music from around 1600. Their move here to a much earlier period also means making a series of executive decisions regarding unwritten performance practices. True to form, they opt for a rich tapestry of instruments, including some today associated almost exclusively with folk music: a bombard, bagpipes, medieval harp, medieval lute, shawm, rebec, sackbut, vieles, up to three male voices, and a range of percussion. They also arrange the music for greater variety, sometimes playing a vocal piece as an instrumental, or introducing a piece with several verses played first as an instrumental—Ciconia’s Gli atti col Dançar being an example of the latter. Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien varies its instrumentation according to its material, and presents themes of greater emotional disparity than courtly love would have supported. The arrangements, though colorful, never go overboard into the meretricious.


Current scholarship inclines to belief that the early troubadours sang without accompaniment, and that later ones may have been accompanied by a single instrument, but our knowledge of this period’s musical performances is woefully inadequate. It’s also extremely unlikely in any case that there was one hard and fast rule adhered to in all courts, in all places. But even if there was such a rule, it would have no effect on the vitality of these performances, which owes much to French folk traditions. The singing (in particular by tenor Simone Sorini, who also takes up the lute) is expressive and, along with the instrumentals, fully expert. In short, this is an expressively wide-ranging program that’s delightfully performed by Lazarevitch and Les Musiciens. Recommended.


FANFARE: Barry Brenesal
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Works on This Recording

1.
Kere Dame / Je voy le bon tens venir by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
2.
Ce jour de l'an que maint by Baude Cordier
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
Period: Medieval 
Written: circa 1400; France 
3.
Donne moy de ton pain bis / Alons commenchier / J'oÿ les clés by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
4.
Mal vi loyauté by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
5.
Et je ferai by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
6.
Je commence / Et je feray / Soules viex by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
7.
Tres gentil cuer by Solage
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
Period: Medieval 
Written: 14th Century; France 
8.
En ce gracïeux tamps by Jacob Senleches
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
9.
Tant plus vos voye / E dieus, conment j'ay grant desir by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
10.
Soit tart tempre / Ja falla / En ties, en latim by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
11.
Gli atti col dançar frances by Johannes Ciconia
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
Period: Medieval 
Written: Italy 
12.
J'ay grant desespoir / J'ay grant espoir by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
13.
Tres douche plasant bergiere / Reconforte toy, robin by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
14.
L'escu d'amors by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
15.
Un fait d'armes by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
16.
Pour dieu vous pri by Matteo da Perugia
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
17.
Tres dous compains by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
18.
Bergeronnete by Adam de la Halle
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
Period: Medieval 
19.
Robin muze / Je ne say fere by Guido
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien
20.
Prenés l'abre peyronelle by Anonymous
Conductor:  François Lazarevitch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Musiciens de Saint-Julien

Sound Samples

Kere Dame - Je voy le bon tens venir (arr. S. Griot and N. Sansarlat)
Ce jour de l'an
Donne moy de ton pain bis - Alons Commenchier - J'oy les cles [Virelai, 1400]
Mal vi loyaute [1400]
Et je ferai [Virelai, 1400]
Je commence / Et je feray / Soules viex: [Motet, 1400]
Tres gentil cuer (arr. S. Griot and N. Sansarlat)
En ce gracieux tamps
Tant plus vos voye - E dieus, conment j'ay grant desir (arr. S. Griot and N. Sansarlat)
Soit tart tempre - Ja falla - En ties, en Latim (arr. S. Griot and N. Sansarlat)
Gli atti col dancar Francesch'inanzi passa
J'ay grant desespoir - J'ay grant espoir [Ballade, 1400]
Tres douche plasant bergiere - Reconforte toy, Robin [Virelai, 1400]
L'escu d'amors [Ballade, 1400]
Un fait d'armes [Ballade, 1400]
Pour Dieu vous pri
Tres dous compains [14th Century]: Tres dous compains [Canon, 1400]
Le jeu de Robin et de Marion: Bergeronnete - Robin, par l'ame ten pere
Robin, muse, muse/Je ne say fere
Prenes l'abre Peyronelle (arr. S. Griot and N. Sansarlat)

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