SCOTTISH LUTE SOURCES

Balcarres Manuscript The most extensive source of Scottish lute music and also the largest British source of lute music after 1640. Its existence was unsuspected until it was discovered in the mid 20th century. The Universities of Glasgow and Aberdeen have published a facsimile of the manuscript with a transcription into grand staff notation and an extensive introduction and commentary - Spring (2010). The music found in the MS can be characterised as a mixture of Scottish and English tunes together with music by French lute composers (reflecting the strong links between Scotland and France at that time). Unusually for manuscript sources all the pieces are identified with the names of musicians composers or originators of a particular arrangement. Some of these are familiar French names (Gallot, Gautier, Mouton and, in one case, Mercure [for a version of this Saraband]) but many of the pieces are attributed to local musicians, Mr. Beck, Mr. Lesslie, John McLauchland, David Grieve and others. Spring (2010) traces the identity of some of these names.

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