As musicians and researchers we are very lucky to be in an age where practically all our important sources are available online. But very often, having the sources, does not mean that we have access to them. Even if we know the original language that they were written in, in order to understand them we need the help of experts - both on a linguistic and a musicological level. Early Music Sources PIE aims to take sources that were never translated, and in some cases never published, and publish them online for free, in English.
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PIE vol. 3 - Louis-Joseph Marchand, A treatise on simple counterpoint or singing on the book (1739): Bilingual edition
Louis-Joseph Marchand’s 1739 Traité du contrepoint simple ou chant sur le livre documents the continuation of a centuries-old tradition of improvised liturgical singing, one which remained part of French choral practice throughout the eighteenth century. An essentially practical work, the treatise aims to provide the reader with the tools required for singing counterpoint extempore, a skill that was claimed to be ‘necessary for all those who aspire to enter into the music of the majority of cathedrals and colleges, both in France, Flanders, and elsewhere.’ The aim of this translation is partly to facilitate academic engagement with this rich tradition of liturgical music-making, but also to aid in the continued practical revival of historical traditions of improvisation in both modern performance and pedagogy.
PIE vol. 2 - Giulio Caccini's Published Writings: Bilingual edition
This new bilingual edition intends to collect all the printed writings by Giulio Caccini (1551-1618), published between 1600 and 1614. The aim of the translation, combined with the bilingual layout, is to facilitate direct access to Caccini’s texts. In particular, the division line-by-line of the texts presents each line of the originals next to their self-contained versions in English. Far from any literary ambitions, the intention is to restrict the translation as much as possible to the exact meaning of every line of the text, hopefully helping the reader to navigate Caccini’s challenging prose, as well as providing an immediate possibility to refer to the original Italian.
PIE vol. 1 - Anonymous (ca. 1670-90), Regole di canto figurato, contrappunto, d'accompagnare
Dr. Flavio Ferri-Benedetti
This Manuscript [I-Bc Ms. E. 25] is describing and demonstrating a manner of playing accompaniment so extravagant, we wouldn’t have imagined otherwise. Amazingly enough, this treatise was never transcribed, translated, or published in modern times. Parts of the manuscript were mentioned in our episode about Italian Basso Continuo 1650-1700, but now we wish, with the help of specialists, to create a free online edition of it in English. The translation will be made by Dr. Flavio Ferri-Benedetti, a musician and a scholar.