Boston Camerata Christmas

A Boston Camerata Christmas

by Boston Camerata
     
 

The three-disc set A Boston Camerata Christmas combines complete reissues of the ensemble's An American Christmas and Noël, Noël! French Christmas Music, 1200-1600, with a compilation from another of its recordings to form A Spanish Christmas. While the enclosed booklet does contain shortened versions of director (emeritus by late 2008) …  See more details below

Overview

The three-disc set A Boston Camerata Christmas combines complete reissues of the ensemble's An American Christmas and Noël, Noël! French Christmas Music, 1200-1600, with a compilation from another of its recordings to form A Spanish Christmas. While the enclosed booklet does contain shortened versions of director (emeritus by late 2008) Joel Cohen's original introductions from the two earlier albums and a piece about the Spanish music, notes on the origins of the individual carols and songs are missing (they can be found on the Boston Camerata's website). But it's the music and performance that matter most. An American Christmas has become a classic recording since its original 1993 release, and 15 years later is still something of a rarity among period-performance recordings. The "early" American music may have roots in other countries and cultures, but there is something in its straightforwardness and relatively unadorned nature that makes it stand out from early European music (aside from its age). It also is 180 degrees from the typical holiday fare heard in every retail outlet in America each December, making it seem all the more wholesome and full of genuine conviction. The early music of A French Christmas is similarly plain and pure sounding -- even in its complex polyphony -- with much stronger ties to religious rites of the season. The Camerata's voices blend effortlessly, with perfect intonation, and although the recording was made in a church, it doesn't have the cold, monastic sound of other discs of French polyphony or chant. Most of it is reverently vocal, and even the instrumental pieces here and there and the dances in the last section of the disc seem to treat the joy of the season with due respect. The music on A Spanish Christmas is grouped by time period or geography, unlike the first two discs, which are arranged into sections relating to different aspects of the holiday. It starts with Medieval music, then moves to music of the Renaissance, and finally music of the Spanish New World. It is no less skillfully performed than the French disc, but it feels freer, more personable, and more celebratory, especially when the musicians' clapping provides the rhythmic impetus or the more rustic-sounding instruments -- like the oud, shawm, or sackbut -- are used. Each of the discs provide a unique view of the season that contrasts not only with other seasonal collections, but also with other early music collections. Anyone looking for something different in the way of Christmas music will be well satisfied with this set.

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Product Details

Release Date:
11/25/2008
Label:
Erato
UPC:
0825646941506
catalogNumber:
516241

Tracks

  1. Watchman of Zion, hymn
  2. Kingsbridge, hymn
  3. Bozrah, hymn
  4. Baptismal anthem
  5. A Christmas Hymn
  6. Christmas Medley: A Virgin Most Pure / A Virgin Unspotted
  7. Boston. For Christmas (John Wyeth's Repository of Sacred Music Part Second, 1820)
  8. The Heavenly Courtier, hymn
  9. Pretty Home, song
  10. The Midnight Cry, carol (American)
  11. Wayfaring Stranger, religious ballad
  12. Slow Traveller, hymn
  13. I Wonder As I Wander (American)
  14. Coventry Carol (2): "Lully, Lulla, Thou Little Tiny Child"
  15. Lovely Vine
  16. Adeste fidelis (O Come, All Ye Faithful)
  17. Still Water
  18. While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks (adapted from Handel)
  19. Sherburne (White & King's The Sacred Harp, 1844)
  20. Shepherds, Rejoice
  21. Fulfillment, carol (American)
  22. Fulfillment, carol (American)
  23. Hush, My Babe, Lie Still and Slumber, carol (Kentucky)
  24. Jesus the Light of the World, carol (American)
  25. Joy to the World (theme by Handel)
  26. Oyez, Seigneur, comment parla, carol (after the Gregorian chant "Conditor alme") (French)
  27. O oriens splendor lucis aeternae, antiphon in mode 2
  28. Le jour Noël, carol (after the Gregorian chant "Fons bonitatis") (French)
  29. Lux hodie...Orientis partibus
  30. Quem vidistis, antiphon in mode 2
  31. Magnum nomen domini
  32. Lux optata claruit (conduit)
  33. Virgo gemma virginum
  34. Quanto decet honore (conduit)
  35. Ave Regina caelorum, antiphon for 3 voices, K. 32
  36. In tua memoria
  37. Magnificat octavi toni, for 2 or 3 voices
  38. Noe, Noe, Noe, motet for 4 voices
  39. Noe noe magnificus est rex pacificus
  40. Conditor en francais
  41. Chantons Noël menons joyeuse vie
  42. Branle de Bourgogne
  43. Or vous trémoussez pasteurs de Judée
  44. Et d'ou venez-vous Madame Lucette?
  45. Bransle de Bourgogne
  46. Disons nau a pleine teste
  47. Ronde and Saltarello
  48. Nouvelles, nouvelles
  49. Près Bethléem dans une éstable
  50. Sur le mont de Sion
  51. Mass "Sus le Pont D'Avignon" for 4 voices
  52. O l'heureuse journée
  53. Bransle de Champagne
  54. Venez ouyr la trompette
  55. Bransle de Champagne
  56. Respondemos, Dio de Abraham
  57. Cantiga de Santa María 340, Virgen Madre groriosa (same as Cantiga de Fiestas de Santa María 412)
  58. Cantiga de Fiestas de Santa María 422, Madre de Deus, ora por nos teu Fill' essa ora (Sibylline verse)
  59. Cantiga de Santa María 1, Des oge mais quer' eu trobar
  60. Cantiga de Santa María 320, Santa María leva
  61. Cantiga de Fiestas de Santa María 417, Nobre don e muy preçado foi Santa María dar
  62. E la don don Verges María (Cancionero de Upsala)
  63. Tau garçó, la durundena
  64. O Magnum Mysterium, motet for 4 voices
  65. Riu, riu, chiu!, carol (Spanish)
  66. Christmas Medley: Calenda maia / Cuando por el oriente
  67. Cum audisset Joannes
  68. Xicochi, xichochi conetzintle (Gently sleep, precious little one), for chorus
  69. Ay, ay galeguiños, villancico
  70. Dame albriçia mano Anton (Joyful tidings, brother Anton), negrito à 4
  71. Si al nacer o minimo, gallego
  72. Tarara qui yo soy Antón
  73. Los coflades de la estrella (The brotherhood of the star), for chorus
  74. Cumbés for guitar
  75. Convidando está la noche, guaracha

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