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1.
00:27
2.
03:37
3.
4.
06:18
5.
04:02
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04:33
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04:37
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04:08
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10:20
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00:29
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21:31

about

Da d'Foc - Through the Fire

This an album of music inspired by the music of the troubadours of mediaeval southwest France. These were poet-musicians who lived and worked in the 11th & 12th centuries and where contemporary with the gnostic group the Cathars.

Some 300 troubadour songs have come down to us today, as well as a far greater number of songs from their northern French counterparts the trouveres.
It is known that at times the troubadours would employ others to perform their music, these often being professional musicians known as jongleurs. These players would also be called on to perform the instrumental music of the time, little of which remains. It is logical to suppose that a good tune composed by a troubadour may well have been performed instrumentally, and indeed some of the troubadour songs that still exist are written in the style of dance tunes

The most well know form of these dance tune is the estampie, or estampida. This is a stamping dance which became popular all over mediaeval Europe; examples of it being found even in English manuscripts of the time.
Much of this early instrumental music would no doubt have been improvised, that is to say made up as the music progressed; and the music on this CD follows this practice. Each piece began its life as a jam session which helped to formulate the finished piece.

They are all played on instruments the troubadours and jongleurs would have been familiar with, in fact many appear in illustrations of the period. Many of these mediaeval instruments are Arabic in origin, and these exist today in Arabic countries, almost unchanged in the past 800 years.

The music of the troubadours and jongleurs did not disappear all together, echoes of it remain with us even today. Their culture was destroyed in the war fought in Southwest France to destroy the Cathars, but their ideas passed on to Italy and became the seeds of the Renaissance, the rebirth. And perhaps in our own time the spirit of the troubadours has passed through the fire to be reborn once more:

Recomensar - we start again.

credits

released March 1, 1991

All pieces written, arranged and performed by
Bob Minney & Nicholas Breeze Wood

Each piece started life as a improvisation, which gradually got fixed as they were recorded - apart from the last track Tenso, which is a pure improvisation recorded in a church hall in Evesham - warts and all.

Recorded during the Winter of 1991
at Estampie, Evesham, and at the Friends
Meeting House, Evesham, Worcestershire, England.

Produced by Nicholas Breeze Wood
Digital Remastered January 2003

Nicholas Breeze Wood:
Medieval Lute • Guitarra Morisca • Sinfonye (Medieval Hurdygurdy) • Sixhole Pipe • Drums • Bells • Vox

Bob Minney:
Medieval Harp • Sinfonye (Medieval Hurdygurdy) • Sixhole Pipe • Plucked Psaltery • Drums • Gusla,
Medieval Lute • Guitarra Morsica • Vox

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about

Nicholas Breeze Wood UK

Multi instrumentalist singer-songwriter drawing on rock, Arabic and Medieval music, using instruments from all those traditions

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