Locke was born in Exeter about 1622 and died in London in 1667. He was one of the great English composers of the middle years of the century, writing music for His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts and the King’s band of violins. The charming pieces (from the ‘Little Consort’ Suites in G minor and C major, respectively) are scored for two trebles, violins or treble viols, continuo and bass. We have used a curtal (or dulcian) instead of the more customary bass viol, together with a liuto attiorbato or ‘theorbo’d lute’. Locke’s scores suggest either theorbos or harpsichord for continuo and it is likely that two theorbos could have been used. Locke was not precise about the scoring of his music and these consorts would sound agreeable on a variety of instrumental combinations.
from notes by Douglas Wootton © 1981