Early Music - J. Johnson: Lute Music / C. Wilson, S. Rumsey

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"Record companies seem not, as yet, to have done very much to celebrate this year's 400th anniversary of the death of Queen Elizabeth I, so this delightful collection of music by her favorite lutenist deserves a particularly warm welcome....Since lute-players were strongly represented in the court musical establishment, to have earned the queen's special preference was no small distinction. It is clear from this selection of pieces for one or two lutes that Johnson fully merited it...The duets, in which Christopher Wilson is joined by Shirley Rumsey, include such attractive items as the Flat Pavan, with its distinctive melancholy flavour [sic], and sets of virtuoso variations on ground basses or popular songs, whose increasingly elaborate figurations are so perfectly coordinated that it is hard to believe that there are two players involved. Both here and in the solo pieces, however, the emphasis in these crisply elegant performances is not so much on virtuoso display as on creating an atmosphere of refined and courtly intimacy." - Elizabeth Roche, Daily Telegraph, 5/17/03

"With impressively executed divisions, charming music and a lustrous over-all ambience, this recording is a tonic to those who might otherwise think that lute music pre-Dowland is all hey nonny cuteness." - Anna Picard, The Independent, April 27, 2003

Product Description:

  • Catalog Number: 8550776

  • UPC: 730099577625

  • Label: Naxos

  • Composer: John Johnson

  • Performer: Christopher Wilson, Shirley Rumsey