Tuesday 21 August 2018
Traditional reel and hornpipe
This old fiddle tune, which can be played as either a hornpipe or a reel, is attested to as a popular piece from at least 1834 in New England. Some collectors thought the tune to be of Irish origins, but it has since been traced to a Scottish reel, “The De'il Among the Tailors”, which was composed around 1790.
The tune is notably mentioned in The Return of the Native by English novelist Thomas Hardy, who was also a fiddler and accordion player:
The air was now that one without any particular beginning, middle, or end, which perhaps among all the dances which throng an inspired fiddler's fancy, best conveys the idea of the interminable — the celebrated “Devil's Dream”. The fury of personal movement that was kindled by the fury of the notes could be approximately imagined by these outsiders under the moon, from the occasional kicks of toes and heels against the floor, whenever the whirl round had been of more than customary velocity.
Monday 20 August 2018
from “40 Esercizi per Flauto”
Today's piece is the seventeenth study from 40 Esercizi per Flauto (40 Exercises for Flute), Op. 101, by Italian flutist, composer and arranger Luigi Hugues.
Sunday 19 August 2018
This nice little piece for two flutes is taken from Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in Philadelphia in 1833.
The title, “Buona notte”, is Italian for “Good night”. Unfortunately we were unable to track the origins of the melody.
Saturday 18 August 2018
from “Amusement militaire”
This gavotte is the eighth and last movement of Amusement militaire, a suite for solo instrument (“musette, vielle, flute and oboe” according to the original edition) and continuo by the French Baroque composer Nicolas Chédeville.
As with several other Op. 6 movements, the title might refer to a German town or locality.
Friday 17 August 2018
This reel is taken from the 1922 collection Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody by Francis O'Neill, who cites as a source for the tune the Rice-Walsh manuscript, a collection of music from the repertoire of Jeremiah Breen, a blind Irish fiddler, notated by his student.
Thursday 16 August 2018
This is the fifth piece from 24 Etudes mélodiques, Op. 110 by German flutist and composer Caspar Kummer. This collection has also been published in English as 24 Melodic Exercises.
Wednesday 15 August 2018
by Michel Pignolet de Montéclair, for two flutes
This is the fourth movement of the fourth of six Concerts à deux Flutes Traversières sans Basse by the French Baroque composer Michel Pignolet de Montéclair. Here the French word concert is a synonym of “suite”, and has nothing to do with the Italian concerto. The title of the movement, “L'Allemande”, translates literally as “The German One”; contrary to what one might think, it is not a reference to the dance of the same name.
Thanks to Marco for suggesting this piece!