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Thread: Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

  1. #1
    Registered User Martin Jonas's Avatar
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    Default Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

    This is a very famous English (late) renaissance tune, written by William Byrd (c.1540-1623) in memory of Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury (1563-1612). The original was for virginals/keyboard, but it is now widely played as a classical guitar piece and also pretty popular in folkish circles, because of John Renbourn's solo guitar adaptation.

    Andy Boden posted his mandolin quartet arrangement here last year (Link), but that's not the version I used, which is by Steven Hendricks for four instrumental voices (treble, two tenors, bass):

    Link

    As far as I can see, this is a direct transcription of the four voices in the original keyboard score distributed onto four instrumental parts -- all of Byrd's notes are here, and only Byrd's notes. This Pavan is unusual (indeed unique) among Byrd's pavans in that the repeats have no additional ornamentation in the score. It's unclear whether this was intentional to preserve the elegant simplicity of the tune, or whether he intended the players to add improvised ornamentation to the performance. I chose the first interpretation, and am therefore playing straight repeats.

    I'm using the Baroq-ulele on this one, and the soprano lute-like tone from the nylgut strings works well for this tune, blended with two tenor guitars and bouzouki bass:

    "Baroq-ulele" soprano lute/mandolin
    Ozark tenor guitar
    Troubadour Lionheart bouzouki (FCGD)

    MP3 attached:



    On Youtube, with pictures of Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury:



    Martin
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  2. #2
    Registered User Tavy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

    Very nicely done Martin, I enjoyed that!

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    Default Re: Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

    That's lovely. I've always loved this piece which I first heard played by John Renbourn on guitar. My trio recorded an arrangement I made a few years ago - https://soundcloud.com/mangotrio/pavan-for-the-earl-of
    jacky

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    Registered User Tom Cherubini's Avatar
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    Default Re: Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

    Sweet! Thank you.
    So chi sono.

  5. #5
    Registered User Martin Jonas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Earl of Salisbury Pavan (William Byrd, 1612)

    Thanks for the kind comments!

    As was the custom in Byrd's time, the pavan was accompanied by a faster and more rhythmic dance variation on the same melodic material in the form of a galliard. In this case, the Earl Of Salisbury Galliard is much less known than the Pavan, but it is a rather nice piece of music in its own right. I have now also recorded the Galliard with the same instrumentation -- for the full effect, the Galliard should be played straight after the Pavan. The arrangement is again by Steve Hendricks:

    http://sca.uwaterloo.ca/Hendricks/Royal/galiardo.pdf

    [MP3=2]http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=113395&d=1390953121[/MP3]



    Martin
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