Frescobaldi Keyboard Works Volume 2

Chromaticism, highly imaginative harmonic writing and rhythmic innovations are just some of the inspirational elements that set Frescobaldi’s music apart; representing not only a milestone in his career, but also in the history of keyboard music.  It was fascinating for me to study these works in historical context with relevance to meantone temperament (a system of tuning at the time) and with particular reference to contemporary fingering practice and its extended consequence on phrasing and articulation.


In stock
Catalogue Number

"Well, I seem to have missed out on Richard Lester’s complete Scarlatti recordings and now he is embarking on a four disc set of the complete Frescobaldi using both harpsichord and organ. This CD proudly states that the instrument in use here is a 1619 example by Giovanni Boni who worked for the Barberini family. Very fine it sounds too. It is a split-keyed instrument with fifteen notes per octave. What do you think of when you think of Frescobaldi? One student of mine wrote that he “was potentially a boring old fart”. That’s a bit harsh to say the least but sometimes whilst wading through long Partites or organ masses you might feel like agreeing. But I have found nothing dull about these performances which give the music every opportunity to speak."  Gary Higginson

"For Lester to bring Frescobaldi's music to us with such clarity (yet never overbearingly) is quite an achievement. The booklet which comes with the CD contains useful background information and descriptions of the music, and of performance practices. It's particularly informative on the tuning and temperament that have been chosen. This adds to our appreciation of just how special the instrument played here is. In the end this all contributes to a more profitable (and hence enjoyable) listen. If you enjoyed the first CD, this second will exceed your expectations. If the repertoire is unfamiliar, this series is an excellent place to start. Recordings of this music are few. Now to have available as accomplished a projected series of recordings as this is truly a treat. Frescobaldi was the most highly regarded composer (the most sought after, the most highly paid) in Italy at the time. Here is a performance and recording enterprise that deserves landmark status of its own. Unhesitatingly recommended."  Mark Sealy

© 2010-2023 Wyastone. All Rights Reserved.