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Ardella Crawford
American Record Guide, January 2011

One of the most thoroughly delightful programs of Renaissance music that I’ve encountered in a while! The moods vary widely here because the idea of the program is to compare the stylized dance music of a “serious” composer—here Matthew Locke—with composers who catered more to popular taste, the chief representative here being John Playford, the Dancing Master.

Hence, interspersed between the four suites from Locke are several of Playford’s dances, including ‘Nobody’s Jig’, ‘The Jovial Beggars’, ‘Simeron’s Dance’, and a medley at the end of Irish and Scottish dances. David Mell’s famous ‘John, Come Kiss me Now’, is here as the title song, as well as a ground for harpsichord from Purcell, a division to a ground by Solomon Eckles, and a pavan for guitar by Francesco Corbetta.

The playing is very lively, and the instruments are wide ranging, including violin, soprano recorder, guitar, harpsichord, theorbo, and chitarrone. The sound is excellent.

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