It was about 15 years ago. As I was gently reading through the magnificent diary of Samuel Pepys, I noted again and again references to a great keyboard master ‘Mr.Gibbons’. I was fully aware of the music by Orlando Gibbons, whose music I had sung and known since the age of eight as a chorister at York Minster. The Gibbons of Pepys could not be Orlando, who died decades before the diary was written. Curiosity duly peaked, I quickly discovered that this famous midseventeenth century Gibbons was Christopher, Orlando’s son. Why, if he was indeed so feted in Pepys’s lifetime had I not come across his music? I was aware of his collaboration with Matthew Locke in the music written for Cupid and Death, but Christopher’s involvement was limited, emerging only in some short undistinguished dances – mostly surviving in only the treble and bass instrumental voices. As an organist and harpsichordist I was astonished that I had not ever heard or seen pieces by this man, especially as he had been one of the great line of Organists at Westminster Abbey, the first to be appointed in 1660 after the Restoration of the Monarchy. During the course of the next years I began digging for information and looking for scores. To my huge surprise there was practically nothing: one dissertation from 1963 and less than a handful of Fantasias for viols. Further rummaging after receipt of the dissertation fuelled ardour and increased my amazement: there was a large repertoire of music by this composer – anthems, fantasies, fantasy-suites and keyboard music. Was this music so uninteresting that it wasn’t worthy of attention? Was that the reason it lay undisturbed in Oxford and London libraries? I ordered microfilms of all of the music and discovered a mastercomposer of great personality and genius. I first put on a concert of his music in 1999 in Amsterdam and have been airing it ever since that time. It is extraordinary music of great emotional power, and there are real masterpieces
TracklistPlease note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
Total time: 01:02:17
|Original Recording Format|
Robina G. Young
All Hallows Church, Gospel Oak, London
|Recording Type & Bit Rate|
|Release Date||August 16, 2014|
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