Vincenzo Galilei: The Well-Tempered Lute (1584)

Vincenzo Galilei: The Well-Tempered Lute (1584)
Žak Ozmo
Hyperion CDA68017. 63’03

Unless you are a lutenist, or particular fan of lute music, you may not have heard of Vincenzo Galilei. But his eldest son might be more familiar – the physicist and astronomer Galileo Galilei. Another son became a lute virtuoso and composer. Vincenzo was born around 1520 and moved to Pisa where he married into nobility and joined a group of influential humanist intellectuals. This led to Vincenzo Galilei making a range of important discoveries on the nature of sound, acoustics and musical physics together with far-sighted theories on music which hold good to this day, including the role of dissonance and the beginning of the style of recitative.

Amongst his musical works was the Libro d’intavolature di liuto of 1584, now in the Florence Biblioteca Nazionale. This CD focuses on the first two of the three sections of the Libro, with their emphasis on the ‘well-tempered lute’. Continue reading