A network for historic guitars and vihuelas
I am currently carrying out research into alfabeto chord charts and was wondering if anyone had ever come across tagliate chords in a song accompaniment. They're certainly rare in this context, but I have found them in one or two sources. Just thought I'd ask, but I won't get my hopes up.
I've heard about the guitar being used for the villancicos, and most early music artists make us think it sounded big in churches on this side of the world. And I really wish I had an excuse to play many villancicos on the guitar... in church during a liturgy of hours would be great.
However, looking at over 800 pieces of music in Guatemala City Cathedral (mostly late 1600s to 1800s), so far I've seen only one direct mention of a guitar. Except for this isolated mention in which the guitar part -if it ever existed-is missing, I have not seen church music in alfabeto, tablature or "normal" notation mentioning a guitar. Continuo -often marked "acompañamiento"- sheets sometimes ask for an instrument like "arpa" or "bajón" ...but saddly I have not seen "guitarra".
Thanks for the Monteverdi suggestion.
This is why I love "early guitar and vihuela". Good, useful, and interesting infomation, always.
The Stevenson book includes an illustration of part of one vocal piece with Castilian cifras
- a Christmas villancico which survives in a Mexican source. This is in the metre of a chamberga and is for five voices. ..Christmas pieces cast in dance form with words in the vernacular are very numerous in Mexican sources. Only three parts, two treble and alto survive, in the form of separate part sheets. All are texted and the cifras are added to the alto part. The manuscript originally belonged to the Convent of the Holy Trinity in Puebla and was obviously used in performance. The names of singers appear on each part, Ysabel and Miguel on the treble parts and Ynes on the alto part. This is particularly interesting because it shows that women took part in professional performances of sacred music in Mexico, both as singers and as instrumentalists - the guitar in this instance was played by a woman. This was not customary in Spain.
I copied and pasted this in from our article ... I have a copy of the illustration but it is barely legible