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Two Lutes: Lute Duets from England's Golden Age


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Audio CD, July 31, 2012
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Two Lutes: Lute Duets from England's Golden Age + The Scottish Lute
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Product Details

  • Performer: Ronn McFarlane, William Simms
  • Composer: John Johnson, John Marchant, Francis Pilkington, John Danyel, John Dowland, et al.
  • Audio CD (July 31, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sono Luminus
  • ASIN: B0085AXT9Q
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #71,604 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Sono Luminus is proud to release Two Lutes: Lute Duets from England's Golden Age, a wonderful collection of enchanting music performed by lute virtuosos Ronn McFarlane and William Simms.
GRAMMY®-nominated lutenist, Ronn McFarlane strives to bring the lute - the most popular instrument of the Renaissance - into today's musical mainstream and make it accessible to a wider audience. Recently, Ronn has been engaged in composing new music for the lute, building on the tradition of the lutenist/composers of past centuries. Williams Simms is an active performer of early music. Equally adept at lute, theory and baroque guitar, he appears regularly with the Bach Sinfonia, Apollo's Fire, Harmonious Blacksmith, and The Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado.

Review

WQXR Album of the Week - '...Simms and McFarlane approach the recording with an air of warmth and accessibility.' --WQXR Radio

'Elizabethan lute duets yield the most companionable and friendly kind of music-making. In equal duets, each lutenist plays nearly the same music, alternating playing the melody and the harmonic accompaniment. It feels like a conversation, with each lutenist posing musical questions and answers throughout. Each player is free to improvise upon the written part, so the conversation can be very individual and spontaneous.' --WQXR Radio, Lisa Flynn

Customer Reviews

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See all 7 customer reviews
Very relaxing, peaceful music, without being boring.
Lorraine E. Masten
Highly recommended for students of Renaissance music, these pieces should also be of interest to guitarists looking for additional early music repertoire.
Oscar O. Veterano
I found them very informative, and the recording quality is excellent.
Warren Harris

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Confederate Artist on December 11, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This CD is without a doubt, the best lute CD that I own and I could listen to it over and over and over, and sometimes I do... these Guy's are serious about their music and it comes across loud and clear. If you like lute, do yourself a favor and get this CD and sit back and relax and have a good time..
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Suzy5 on November 23, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This CD is able to take you to another world. Works great on the way to work or going back home!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Warren Harris on September 10, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This disc consists of 27 pieces of early music from England composed for two lutes. The composers featured are John Johnson, John Marchant, John Danyel, John Dowland, Thomas Robinson, as well as a handful of anonymously penned works. The two lute performers are Ronn McFarlane and William Simms, and they are outstanding. The playing is articulate and crisp, the duo really works well together as a team to bring the music to life, and there is definite joy in hearing them both play. Add to that the fact that it is just really cool to hear lute duets performed this well, and the recording is a winner.

The liner notes impart a bit of a history lesson, as well as details about each of the performers. I found them very informative, and the recording quality is excellent.

This disc is irresistible, and provides a very satisfying listening experience. I will certainly seek out other recordings from Mr. MdFarlane and Mr. Simms. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Oscar O. Veterano on August 24, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Ronn McFarlane and William Simms - TWO LUTES - Sono Luminus

These rarely heard lute duets come from the period of the high English Renaissance , mainly from the pens of John Johnson, court lutenist for Elizabeth I, and Thomas Robinson. They are divided between duets of equal parts and those featuring melodic solo with chordal accompaniment (i.e. lead and rhythm) parts.

Ronn McFarlane and William Simms are both internationally recognized virtuoso performers of early music, so, as might be expected, the playing here is uniformly excellent. In addition to their knowledge and technical skills, these gentlemen bring an obvious sense of enjoyment to their performance that turns what could have been an academic exposition of source material into a genuine aesthetic pleasure.

Special mention should be made of the efforts of recording engineer, Daniel Shores; the recording quality is faultless, clear, clean and perfectly balanced.

Highly recommended for students of Renaissance music, these pieces should also be of interest to guitarists looking for additional early music repertoire. This is beautiful music lovingly performed and perfectly recorded, so for the general listener curious about but with little knowledge of this era, this recording is a wonderful place to start.

Highest possible recommendation -10 out of 10 - Oscar O Veterano
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