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Track(s) taken from CDA66558

Go from my window, BK79

composer
Forster (No 56), BL Royal Music Library MS 23.l.4. (f. 83). [Neighbour, p 160]

Davitt Moroney (harpsichord)
Recording details: March 1992
Ingatestone Hall, Ingatestone, Essex, United Kingdom
Produced by Edward Kershaw
Engineered by Mike Hatch
Release date: June 2001
Total duration: 4 minutes 17 seconds
 
1

Other recordings available for download

Davitt Moroney (harpsichord)

Reviews

'Here, now, is a clever selection featuring all six of his instruments including the captivating muselar. Essential listening' (BBC Music Magazine)

‘A good compilation, showcasing Moroney’s playing as well as the breadth and richness of Byrd’s output’ (Early Music Review)

‘If your library is in need of some early keyboard works then you need look no further. Without exception the performances are excellent. Highly recommended’ (www.musicteachers)
In 1587 John Wolfe was licensed to print a ballad with this title, although no copy is known to have survived. The words associated with the tune may have been close to those sung by Merrythought in Beaumont and Fletcher’s The Knight of the Burning Pestle (1613): ‘Go from my window love, go. / Go from my window my dear. / The wind and the rain / Will drive you back again, / Thou canst not be lodged here.’

Byrd’s work probably dates from the 1590s at the earliest, and is among his most mature compositions. It was included by Thomas Tomkins in his first list of Lessons of worthe. This work displays a particularly subtle approach to harmonic variety and keyboard figuration, where nothing occurs by rote and every phrase has little surprises. The calm lyricism is not really disturbed by the wide-ranging scales that gradually overtake the melody. The tune itself sometimes disappears, and yet the ear never loses track of it. At Variation 5 it moves into the tenor, in the left hand, and then starts migrating around the texture, as if searching for free fingers to play it. In the closing Variation 7, the melody is again down in the tenor, consistent with Byrd’s liking for a descant melody covering the tune at the end.

A keyboard setting of the same melody also exist by John Bull (in NYPL 5612), and a less adventurous one occurs twice in the FVB (Nos 9, 42), with conflicting attributions to both Thomas Morley and John Mundy. Several rather simple lute settings also survive: John Dowland’s is perhaps the best, although Edward Collard’s variations are excellent, as is an exceptionally fine anonymous set. Finally, there are two more complex consort settings, both of which must be later than Byrd’s: a version for ‘English consort’ by Richard Allison that appeared in Morley’s compilation of Consort Lessons (1599), and the splendid version for six-part consort which, although anonymous in the manuscript, is probably by Orlando Gibbons.

from notes by Davitt Moroney © 1999

En 1587, John Wolfe reçut l’autorisation d’imprimer une chanson avec ce titre, mais aucun exemplaire n’est connu. Les paroles associées à cette mélodie étaient peut-être proches de celles chantées par Merrythought dans The Knight of the Burning Pestle de Beaumont et Fletcher (1613) : “Pars de ma fenêtre, mon amour, va. / Pars de ma fenêtre, ma chère. / Le vent et la pluie / Te pousseront à revenir, / Tu ne peux pas être logée ici.”

Il est peu probable que Byrd ait pu écrire ces variations avant les années 1590, au plus tôt, car elles sont parmi les plus sophistiquées qu’il ait conçues. Thomas Tomkins les a mises dans sa première liste de Lessons of worthe. Il y a ici une variété harmonique et une figuration claviéristique particulièrement subtiles. Rien n’est fait de façon automatique et chaque phrase présente des petites surprises. Le calme lyrisme n’est guère dérangé par les grandes gammes qui prennent progressivement le dessus sur la mélodie ; en effet, celle-ci disparaît peu à peu, sans que l’oreille ne la perde vraiment. Dans la variation 5, elle est au ténor, à la main gauche, et puis elle se promène dans la texture musicale, comme si elle cherchait des doigts libres à qui se confier. Dans la dernière partie, la variation 7, elle est à nouveau au ténor, laissant la place à un beau déchant à la main droite.

Il y a également une série de variations de John Bull sur la même mélodie (dans NYPL 5612), et une autre, moins intéressante, qui figure deux fois dans le FVB (n° 9 et n° 42), attribuée de façon confuse à Thomas Morley ainsi qu’à John Mundy. D’autres versions pour luth sont connues, mais elles sont plus simples : celle de John Dowland est la plus célèbre, mais les variations d’Edward Collard et une autre version anonyme sont excellentes aussi. Enfin, deux versions pour consort sont connues, sans doute plus tardives que l’œuvre de Byrd : une version pour “consort anglais” (avec des instruments mélangés) de Richard Allison, publiée par Morley dans ses Consort Lessons (1599), et une magnifique série de variations pour consort à six voix, anonyme mais probablement d’Orlando Gibbons.

extrait des notes rédigées par Davitt Moroney © 1999

Other albums featuring this work

Byrd: The Complete Keyboard Music
CDS44461/77CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
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