Reviews by the editorial staff of Early Music America. Have a new recording or book? Submit it for consideration.
This path-breaking new book might be the definitive study of the technique, called 'solmization,' by which many 18th-c. musicians learned to read—and subsequently to perform, improvise and compose—melodic lines.
'Eros & Subtilitas,' the latest from Tasto Solo, is as unmissable as their other recent releases. It centers around music by 16th-c. Italian composer Vicenzo Ruffo and the interplay between vocal and instrumental music.
The Baroque-to-Folk ensemble Beneath A Tree gathered their favorite and most enjoyable music in the album 'My Cup of Tea.' They performed on a recent EMA Emerging Artists Showcase, and this recording is equally impressive—warm, unpretentious, beautifully delivered.
Josef Fiala, friend of the Mozart family, composed music for the viola da gamba. On this intriguing new recording, gambist Thomas Fritzsch links Fiala's music with Mozart's.
Pianist Andras Schiff is no newcomer to period-instrument performance. His latest recording is music by J.S. Bach on an unfretted clavichord -- likely the same type used by the composer.
The evolution of St. Cecilia, from an early Christian martyr to the patron saint of all musicians, is told in a fascinating new book through documents, visual art, and music.
A complete Mozart symphony recording project from Il Pomo d’Oro, a crack ensemble, and conductor Maxim Emelyanychev, is off to an auspicious start, and then some. Mozart's first and last symphonies are here, along with the Piano Concerto No 23. These are performances of high elegance and spirit.
Lutenist Hopkinson Smith has reworked two books of lute solos by Francesco Spinacino and Joan Ambrosio Dalza that were published with so many errors in 1507 that they are nearly unplayable. The result opens a new chapter in lute history.
'LOVESICK,' the latest album from American countertenor Randall Scotting is a tight collaboration with lutenist Stephen Stubbs, providing 17th-century perspectives on heartbreak, longing, and loneliness.
Celebrated and misused, 'the Star-Spangled Banner' stirs patriotic fervor yet, like many documents of early American history, has never quite shed it racist overtones. A smart new book explores the national anthem from multiple angles.