Old English Songs and Dances – Western Brass Quintet


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Since its founding in 1966, the Western Brass Quintet has specialized in researching and performing old music. This disc features arrangements made by members of the WBQ of English music from the Renaissance and Baroque eras. The choice of this music to arrange and transcribe is based on the beauty of the melodic lines and the interesting harmonic textures. The approach used was one of combining different songs or dances, like in the Holborne arrangement later on this disc, thereby expanding each movement to include up to three pieces. Instead of pairing dances together they selected songs and dances that fit the emotion of the movement and compliment each other well. Improvisatory-like sections have been constructed to connect Dowland’s songs within each movement. Along with written out ornamentations and embellishments, the WBQ performers also have added their own embellishments.

‘…exhibiting a remarkable flair for the Renaissance style…’
-The New York Concert Review

‘The Western Brass Quintet gave unremitting evidence of their individual talents and ensemble training; chords were precisely weighted and registered, instrumental blends were sensitively arranged, and there was rarely a tentatively attacked or released note.’
-The New York Times

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