Saturday 1 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Whistle an' I'll Come to You My Lad

 Traditional Scottish tune, arranged for two flutes

This air was reputedly composed by fiddler John Bruce of Braemar, Scotland. He took part in the Jacobite rising of 1745, but was imprisoned in Edinburgh Castle when Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated. No one knows when the air was composed, although c. 1750 has been suggested.

Niel Gow's Complete Repository (1806) identifies the tune as “Irish”, perhaps because a version was used by Irish dramatist John O'Keefe as the vehicle of a song (beginning “Since love is the plan, I'll love if I can”) for his 1783 comic opera The Poor Soldier.

The present arrangement for two flutes appeared in Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in Philadelphia in 1833.

Categories: Celtic Music Jigs Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 2 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study No. 30 in G minor

 from “40 Esercizi per Flauto”

Today's piece is the thirtieth study from 40 Esercizi per Flauto (40 Exercises for Flute), Op. 101, by Italian flutist, composer and arranger Luigi Hugues.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Monday 3 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Leise rieselt der Schnee

 Traditional German carol

“Leise rieselt der Schnee” (“Softly falls the snow”) is one of the most popular German carols. The lyrics are from a poem by Eduard Ebel, originally published in 1895 as “Weihnachtsgruß” (“Christmas greeting”). The melody is sometimes also attributed to Ebel, though this attribution is probably spurious, especially considering that Ebel only published the text of the song.

Ebel's winter poem was originally subtitled “ein Kinderlied”, meaning “a children's song”. It wasn't intended as an Advent or Christmas song, but because of its Christmas references it became a popular carol during the early weeks leading up to Christmas.

Thanks to Gabriela for suggesting this tune!

Tuesday 4 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Capriccio in F major by Quantz

 for solo flute

This capriccio is one of 24 pieces attributed to the famous German flutist and composer Johann Joachim Quantz to have survived in a manuscript titled Fantasier og Preludier. 8. Capricier og andre Stykker til Øvelse for Flöÿten af Quanz (“Fantasies and Preludes. 8 Caprices and other Pieces for Exercise for the Flute by Quantz”). This manuscript has been kept in the Giedde Collection (named after its founder, Danish composer W.H.R.R. Giedde) in the Royal Library of Copenhagen, which hosts a fairly comprehensive collection of flute music from the second half of the 18th century.

Categories: Baroque Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 5 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Duet in D major by Devienne

 from “Nouvelle Méthode pour la flûte”

This lovely little duet is taken from the Nouvelle Méthode théorique et pratique pour la flûte by French flutist and composer François Devienne, published in 1794.

Categories: Classical Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Thursday 6 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in C minor by Kummer

 from “Melodic Exercises”

This is the twentieth 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.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Friday 7 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Dwa serduszka

 Traditional Polish tune

This traditional Polish love song was recently made internationally famous by the 2018 movie Cold War (Zimna wojna), directed by Paweł Pawlikowski. The song appears throughout the film in a variety of arrangements, speaking of “two hearts, four eyes” and a love that can never be.

Thanks to Vikki for suggesting this tune!

Categories: Film music Love songs Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Saturday 8 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Largo by Boismortier

 from Flute Sonata No. 1 in G major

This is the opening movement of the first sonata from Sonates pour la flûte traversière avec la basse, Op. 19 by the prolific French Baroque composer Joseph Bodin de Boismortier. These sonatas were originally published in Paris in 1727.

Categories: Baroque Sonatas Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 9 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Two Menuets by Montéclair

 for two flutes

These two minuets constitute the second movement of the first 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.

Categories: Baroque Minuets Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Monday 10 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in E-flat major by Hugues

 from “40 Esercizi per Flauto”

Today's piece is the thirty-first study from 40 Esercizi per Flauto (40 Exercises for Flute), Op. 101, by Italian flutist, composer and arranger Luigi Hugues.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Tuesday 11 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her

 Popular German hymn tune and carol

“Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her” (most often translated as “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come”, although a more literal translation would be “From High in the Heavens, that's where I come from”) is a hymn text about the Nativity of Jesus, written by Martin Luther in 1534. The hymn is most often sung to a melody that first appeared in 1539, and that was likely composed by Luther as well. This version quickly became a classic Christmas carol, and many famous composers referred to it in their compositions, including Eccard, Praetorius, Pachelbel, J.S. Bach, J.C. Bach, von Weber, Mendelssohn, Stravinsky, and many others.

Thanks to Gabriela for suggesting this tune!

Categories: Christian music Christmas carols Hymn tunesDifficulty: easy
Wednesday 12 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Capriccio in G major by Quantz

 for solo flute

This capriccio is one of 24 pieces attributed to the famous German flutist and composer Johann Joachim Quantz to have survived in a manuscript titled Fantasier og Preludier. 8. Capricier og andre Stykker til Øvelse for Flöÿten af Quanz (“Fantasies and Preludes. 8 Caprices and other Pieces for Exercise for the Flute by Quantz”). This manuscript has been kept in the Giedde Collection (named after its founder, Danish composer W.H.R.R. Giedde) in the Royal Library of Copenhagen, which hosts a fairly comprehensive collection of flute music from the second half of the 18th century.

Categories: Baroque Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Thursday 13 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Duet in B minor by Devienne

 from “Nouvelle Méthode pour la flûte”

This short duet in B minor is taken from the Nouvelle Méthode théorique et pratique pour la flûte by French flutist and composer François Devienne, published in 1794.

Categories: Classical Written for FluteDifficulty: easy
Friday 14 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in B-flat major by Kummer

 from “Melodic Exercises”

This is the twenty-first 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.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Saturday 15 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Alle Jahre wieder

 German Christmas carol

“Alle Jahre wieder” (“Every year again”) is one of the most well-known German-language Christmas carols. It dates back to 1837, when Wilhelm Hey wrote its lyrics. A couple different tunes have been associated with these lyrics over the years, but none of them ever became as popular as the melody by Friedrich Silcher (1842) that is sung today.

Categories: Christian music Christmas carolsDifficulty: easy
Sunday 16 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Allemanda by Boismortier

 from Flute Sonata No. 1 in G major

This allemande is the second movement of the first sonata from Sonates pour la flûte traversière avec la basse, Op. 19 by the prolific French Baroque composer Joseph Bodin de Boismortier. These sonatas were originally published in Paris in 1727.

Categories: Allemandes Baroque Sonatas Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Monday 17 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Rolla to Cora

 Traditional melody, arranged for two flutes

This flute duet appears in Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in Philadelphia in 1833. The book identifies it as an “Indian melody”, but it is unclear whether it refers to India or to American Indians (i.e., Native Americans). Unfortunately we could not find any mention of the title “Rolla to Cora” outside of this volume.

Categories: Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Tuesday 18 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in E-flat major by Hugues

 from “40 Esercizi per Flauto”

Today's piece is the thirty-second study from 40 Esercizi per Flauto (40 Exercises for Flute), Op. 101, by Italian flutist, composer and arranger Luigi Hugues.

Categories: Etudes Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 19 December 2018

Tune of the Day: O du fröhliche

 Traditional German Christmas carol

“O du fröhliche” (usually translated to English as “O, how joyful”) is a popular German Christmas carol. Its original text was authored by Johannes Daniel Falk (1768–1826), a philosopher and poet who, after losing four of his seven children to typhoid fever, founded a rescue house for abandoned children in the German city of Weimar. In 1816, he dedicated this song to the children of the orphanage. The melody was taken from the anonymous Catholic hymn “O Sanctissima” (“O most holy”, also known as “Sicilian Mariners Hymn”), which he found in J.G. Herder's book Stimmen der Völker in Liedern (Voices of the Peoples in Songs) after hearing it sung by Pietro Granucci, an Italian foundling under his care. In Falk's original text, the song was titled “Allerdreifeiertagslied” (Song for three holidays), highlighting the three major festivals of Christianity: Christmas, Easter and Pentecost.

Thanks to Gabriela for suggesting this tune!

Thursday 20 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Capriccio in G major by Quantz

 for solo flute

This capriccio is one of 24 pieces attributed to the famous German flutist and composer Johann Joachim Quantz to have survived in a manuscript titled Fantasier og Preludier. 8. Capricier og andre Stykker til Øvelse for Flöÿten af Quanz (“Fantasies and Preludes. 8 Caprices and other Pieces for Exercise for the Flute by Quantz”). This manuscript has been kept in the Giedde Collection (named after its founder, Danish composer W.H.R.R. Giedde) in the Royal Library of Copenhagen, which hosts a fairly comprehensive collection of flute music from the second half of the 18th century.

Categories: Baroque Written for FluteDifficulty: advanced
Friday 21 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Air by Montéclair

 for two flutes

This air is the third movement of the first 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.

Categories: Baroque Written for FluteDifficulty: easy
Saturday 22 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in G minor by Kummer

 from “Melodic Exercises”

This is the twenty-second 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.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 23 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Es wird scho glei dumpa

 Traditional Austrian Christmas carol

The words and music of this carol appeared in print for the first time in 1884, with lyrics credited to Anton Reidinger (1839–1912), a Catholic priest who lived in Upper Austria (Oberösterreich). Because this carol is in Austrian dialect, the spelling varies slightly from source to source; in standard German (the official language of Austria), the title is “Es wird schon gleich dunkel”, which means “It will soon be dark”. The melody is based on an old Austrian hymn honoring Mary which dates back to the 17th century, but Reidinger's contribution to the new melody was substantial, to the point that some consider him the composer of the music.

This carol is still popular today, and is often performed by choirs during the Christmas season. In the early 80s, it was brought to international popularity by the disco group Boney M., who included an English-language version titled “Darnkess Is Falling” in their 1981 Christmas Album.

Monday 24 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Affettuoso by Boismortier

 from Flute Sonata No. 1 in G major

This is the third movement of the first sonata from Sonates pour la flûte traversière avec la basse, Op. 19 by the prolific French Baroque composer Joseph Bodin de Boismortier. These sonatas were originally published in Paris in 1727.

Categories: Baroque Sonatas Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Tuesday 25 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Duet in D major by Devienne

 from “Nouvelle Méthode pour la flûte”

This short, lively duet is taken from the Nouvelle Méthode théorique et pratique pour la flûte by French flutist and composer François Devienne, published in 1794.

Categories: Classical Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 26 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in C minor by Hugues

 from “40 Esercizi per Flauto”

Today's piece is the thirty-third study from 40 Esercizi per Flauto (40 Exercises for Flute), Op. 101, by Italian flutist, composer and arranger Luigi Hugues.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Thursday 27 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Dunse Dings A'

 Traditional Scottish reel

The title of this tune refers to Duns, an ancient town high in the Border hills. “Dunse dings a'” means “Duns beats/surpasses all”, an expression of local pride. One of the greatest medieval philosophers, John Duns Scotus (c. 1266–1308), was born there. He was renowned throughout Europe, and lectured in Oxford and Paris. Unfortunately, his views were the object of severe criticism and scorn by 16th-century philosophers, who accused him of sophistry and even coined the term ‛dunce’ in derision.

The earliest appearance of the tune in print is in Neil Stewart's A Collection of the Newest and the Best Reels, or Country Dances, Adapted for the Violin or German Flute, published in Edinburgh in 1761.

Categories: Reels Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate
Friday 28 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Capriccio VI in G major

 for solo flute

This capriccio is one of 24 pieces attributed to the famous German flutist and composer Johann Joachim Quantz to have survived in a manuscript titled Fantasier og Preludier. 8. Capricier og andre Stykker til Øvelse for Flöÿten af Quanz (“Fantasies and Preludes. 8 Caprices and other Pieces for Exercise for the Flute by Quantz”). This manuscript has been kept in the Giedde Collection (named after its founder, Danish composer W.H.R.R. Giedde) in the Royal Library of Copenhagen, which hosts a fairly comprehensive collection of flute music from the second half of the 18th century.

Categories: Baroque Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Saturday 29 December 2018

Tune of the Day: A Puzzle For Students

 Waltz for two flutes

This a waltz for two flutes is taken from Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in Philadelphia in 1833. Unfortunately Blake offers no indication of the origin of the piece, and searching the web for its mysterious title proved fruitless.

Categories: WaltzesDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 30 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Study in F major by Kummer

 from “Melodic Exercises”

This beautifully ornamented Larghetto is the twenty-third 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.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: advanced
Monday 31 December 2018

Tune of the Day: Matinée

 Traditional American dance tune

This tune appears in Harding's All-Round Collection of Jigs, Reels and Country Dances, published in New York in 1905. It is categorized as a “Buck Dance”, suggesting that the melody was employed as the vehicle for a latter 19th century solo stage dance.

Categories: Dance tunes Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate