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Dorian Recordings


Archguitar Renaissance

Peter Blanchette, Archguitar
with The Virtual Consort

DOR-93178 Cover Thomas Mace, author of the 1676 treatise "Musick's Monument," preffered adjectives to accuracy and decorated his prose with terrible verse.   Describing a trip to Italy, he mentions seeing "lutes, archlutes, guitars and archguitars."
"By archguitar, he probably meant the chitarrone, which is basically a big guitar," says Peter Blanchette.   "No musician I know ever heard of an archguitar.   So I co-opted the name."
Blanchette grew up playing electric guitar in the Boston area, but a Julian Bream concert changed his life.   He switched to lute and guitar, but felt frustrated by the limitations of both.   He wished for more bass notes on the guitar, and it wouldn't hurt if they were fretted, as on the softer-sounding lute.
He worked with guitar maker Walter Stanul on putting a playable form to these ideas, and in 1982 the new instrument was born.   "For the first five or six years I played it, people would ask me what the heck it was.   Eventually, I came up with 'archguitar.'"   Now all the expanded-range instruments that Walter Stanul built for Blanchette and the others who play them are called archguitars.    
- Byron Nilsson

1.   Pavane - Pierre Attaignant
2.   Dance - anon. Poland (ca. 1530)
3.   Courante - Jakob Polak
4.   Basse Danse: "Tous mes Amis" - Pierre Attaignant
5.   "Have You Seen but a White Lilly Grow?" - unknown England (ca. 1600)
6.   Gagliarda - Vincenzo Galilei?
7.   Saltarello - Pietro Bianchetti
8.   Branle Poictou - Pierre Attaignant
9.   Dance - Wieceslaw Dlugoraj
10. Basse Dance: "La Brossa" - Pierre Attaignant
11. "Fuggitiva mia Speranza" - Mateo Cara
12. "La Brosse" / Recoupe - Pierre Attaignant
13. Branle - Jean Baptiste Bésard
14. Basse Dance: "La Roque" - Pierre Attaignant
15. Basse Dance: "La Magdalena" - Pierre Attaignant
16. A Fancy - John Dowland
17. "If My Complaints Could Passions Move" - John Dowland
18. "O bon Eglie, O bon O!" - Mateo Cara
19. "Vaghe Belleze . . ." - anon. Italy (ca. 1520)
20. Saltarello - anon. Italy (ca. 1520)
21. "Per Fuggir . . ." - Mateo Cara
22. Courante - Wieceslaw Dlugoraj
23. The Frog Galliard - John Dowland
24. "The Willow" - anon. England (ca. 1620)
25. "Vegnando da Bologna La Scarpa mi fa Male" - Pierre Attaignant

Dorian Recordings & Dorian Discovery
are distributed in Australia by Rockian Trading