Sunday, December 16, 2007

'Tis the season for early music

It's Christmas time... and though you may not know it, you're listening to songs from several hundred years ago:
  • the Coventry carol, from the 1591 pageant of the Shearmen and Tailors in Coventry, England
  • "Ding Dong Merrily on High," which borrows the tune of the Bransle L'Officiale from Arbeau's Orchesographie
  • "Riu riu chiu," a 16th century Spanish villancico
  • "The Friendly Beasts," which lifts the tune of "Orientis partibus," a macaronic Latin/French song of the 13th century
Merry Christmas... and good music.

UPDATE: Silly me... how could I have forgotten "What Child is This?" (to the tune of "Greensleeves") or "In Dulci Jubilo"?

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