Western Wind: Music by John Taverner & Court Music for Henry VIII

Western Wind
Music by John Taverner & Court Music for Henry VIII
Taverner Choir & Players, Andrew Parrott
Avie AV2352. 79’20

When I first saw the cover of this CD and the names of the performers, I started looking to see if this was a re-release of an earlier recording. But it is a new recording, made in 2015, featuring the distinguished names of singers Emily Van Evera and Charles Daniels, alongside Andrew Parrott and his Taverner Choir and Players. Most recordings or concerts based on a Mass setting interweave vocal motets around the usual Mass movements in an attempted liturgical reconstruction but, very refreshingly, this CD incorporates a miscellany of instrumental and vocal music related to the Court of Henry VIII alongside The Western Wynde Mass by John Taverner, an almost exact contemporary of the King.

The CD opens with a solo recorder, playing the 16th century melody of Westron wynde before the chanted Kyrie. As was usual in English mass settings Continue reading