I've recently been listening to Jacob Heringman's new CD of Josquin

lute intabulations on the Discipline Global Mobile label [DGM0006]

and wanted to share my appreciation of it with you. I've kept an

inventory of Josquin for lute over the years but, probably like most

of you, don't spend much time playing intabulations. Well, this CD

may change the way we think about them, especially settings of music

by one of the greatest composers of the renaissance, Josquin Desprez


The aim of a CD devoted to intabulations, and exclusively by Josquin

is truly novel but completely justified by the result - and I

congratulate Jacob on a fine disc. His controlled mastery of this

technically difficult music is something I marvel at. The generous

67 minutes include a nice balance of shorter and longer items with

great richness in the lower and sweetness and clarity in the higher

tessitura. What is quite surprising is that the intensity and depth

of Josquin seems to shine through whoever is intabulating it - they

are all subservient to his great music. The CD begins with an

anonymous setting of Praeter rerum but the remaining intabulations

are ascribed to a wide range of great and famous lute composers -

from the earlier Spinacino and Capirola through de Rippe, Gerle and

Hans Neusidler to the later Gintzler and Bakfark settings. The

Spanish vihuelists are represented by Fuenllana, Narvaez and Mudarra.

My favourites are the Capirola, de Rippe and Fuenllana items - but

they are all so good that it is difficult to chose between them. The

two settings of the dancy Scaramella provides good contrast and the

Hans Neusidler setting of Adieu mes amour is surprisingly good for

him - flowing mellifluously in Jacob's hands! The sleeve notes

include comments by Jacob on his choice of intabulations from the 50

or so for lute that survive as well as a new Josquin biography by

David Fallows based on recently discovered information.

John H Robinson, Lutenet, 2000