John Dowland: Lute Songs / Alfred Deller, coutnertenor; Robert Spencer, lute

Audio Samples

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow, my tears, fall from your springs, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : John Dowland's Galliard, for lute, P 21
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Laiton's Almain, for lute, P 48
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Fortune My Foe, song arranged for lute, P 62
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Frog Galliard, for lute, P 23
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Weep you no more, sad fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Me, me, and none but me, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : What if I never speed?, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lasso vita mia, mi fa morire, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Shoemaker's Wife, a Toy, for lute, P 58
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse (The Right Honourable Robert, Earl of Essex, his Galliard), galliard for lute, P 42
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Thing (Mrs White's Choice), almain for lute, P 50
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Round Battle Galliard, for lute, P 39
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Wilt thou unkind thus reave me of my heart, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come away come sweet love, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sorrow, stay, lend true repentant tears, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : If that a sinner's sighs be angel's food, sacred song for 4 voices & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mr Dowland's Midnight, almain for lute, P 99
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Say, Love if ever thou didst find, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lachrimae Pavan, for keyboard or lute (from "Lachrimae")
>Dowland, John [Composer] : If my complaints could passions move, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Most Sacred Queen Elizabeth, her Galliard (Katherine Darcy's Galliard), for lute, P 41
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come again, sweet love doth now invite, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : I saw my lady weep, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Song)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Orlando Sleepeth, arrangement for lute, P 61
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Tarleton's Resurrection, for lute, P 59
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sir John Smith, his Almain, for lute, P 47
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Nothing, for lute, P 56
>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Chamberlain his Galliard, for 2 to play on 1 lute, P 37
>Dowland, John [Composer] : From silent night, true register of moans, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow not so fast ye fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Willoughby's Welcome Home, for lute, P 66
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs. Winters Jump, for lute, P 55
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mellancoly Galliard, for lute, P 25
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Hunsdon's Almain (Lady Hunsdon's Puffe), for lute, P 54
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Shall I sue, shall I seek for grace?, for 4 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : In darkness let me dwell, for voice, lute & bass viol (A Musicall Banquet)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Dowland's First Galliard, for lute, P 22
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse my wrongs, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come, heavy sleep, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Captain Piper's Pavan and Galliard, for consort (from Morley's Book)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Go, nightly cares, the enemy to rest, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)

Album Summary

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow, my tears, fall from your springs, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : John Dowland's Galliard, for lute, P 21
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Laiton's Almain, for lute, P 48
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Fortune My Foe, song arranged for lute, P 62
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Frog Galliard, for lute, P 23
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Weep you no more, sad fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Me, me, and none but me, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : What if I never speed?, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lasso vita mia, mi fa morire, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Shoemaker's Wife, a Toy, for lute, P 58
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse (The Right Honourable Robert, Earl of Essex, his Galliard), galliard for lute, P 42
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Thing (Mrs White's Choice), almain for lute, P 50
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Round Battle Galliard, for lute, P 39
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Wilt thou unkind thus reave me of my heart, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come away come sweet love, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sorrow, stay, lend true repentant tears, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : If that a sinner's sighs be angel's food, sacred song for 4 voices & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mr Dowland's Midnight, almain for lute, P 99
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Say, Love if ever thou didst find, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lachrimae Pavan, for keyboard or lute (from "Lachrimae")
>Dowland, John [Composer] : If my complaints could passions move, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Most Sacred Queen Elizabeth, her Galliard (Katherine Darcy's Galliard), for lute, P 41
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come again, sweet love doth now invite, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : I saw my lady weep, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Song)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Orlando Sleepeth, arrangement for lute, P 61
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Tarleton's Resurrection, for lute, P 59
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sir John Smith, his Almain, for lute, P 47
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Nothing, for lute, P 56
>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Chamberlain his Galliard, for 2 to play on 1 lute, P 37
>Dowland, John [Composer] : From silent night, true register of moans, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow not so fast ye fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Willoughby's Welcome Home, for lute, P 66
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs. Winters Jump, for lute, P 55
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mellancoly Galliard, for lute, P 25
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Hunsdon's Almain (Lady Hunsdon's Puffe), for lute, P 54
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Shall I sue, shall I seek for grace?, for 4 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : In darkness let me dwell, for voice, lute & bass viol (A Musicall Banquet)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Dowland's First Galliard, for lute, P 22
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse my wrongs, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come, heavy sleep, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Captain Piper's Pavan and Galliard, for consort (from Morley's Book)
>Dowland, John [Composer] : Go, nightly cares, the enemy to rest, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
Performers Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Another timely reissue for his centenary, Alfred Deller's Dowland has become part of our history. The most legendary of English countertenors distilled the very essence of the melancholy of the 17th century English song in general and of the composer of the 'Lachrimae' in particular.

First Book: Wilt thou unkind; Come away, come sweet love; Come again sweet love; If my complaints; Can she excuse my wrongs?; Come heavy sleep. Second Book. Flow my tears; Sorrow stay; I saw my lady weep; Shall I sue? Third Book. Weep you no more, sad fountains; Me, me and none but me; What if I never speed; Say, love, if ever thou didst find; Flow not so fast, ye fountains. Pilgrim's Solace. Lasso, vita mia; From silent night; If that a sinner's sighs; Go nightly cares. Musical Banquet. In darkness let me dwell. Consort Pieces. Fortune my foe; The Froag galliard; The Round Battle galliard; Lachrimae pavan; Can she excuse?; Katherine Darcy's galliard. Bandoura Solos. Galliard (The King of Denmark); The Lady Laeton's Lute Solos. The shoemaker's wife; Can she excuse?; Mistress White's thing; Orlando sleepeth; Tarleton's resurrection; Sir John Smith's almain; Mistress White's nothing; Midnight; Mistress Winter's Jump; Melancholy galliard; My Lady Hundsdon's puffe. Lute Duets. My Lord Chamberlain's galliard; My Lord Willoughby's welcome home.

Gramophone reviewing the original LP release
With representative works from all branches of Dowland's output except for vocal ensembles, sacred music and viol consorts, this set bids fair to challenge the L'Oiseau-Lyre 'complete works' project on 20-odd records: it gives a good, broad picture of Dowland's importance, selecting favourite songs from each of the song-books and interspersing them with splendidly performed' instrumental pieces. Each side normally begins with a couple of songs and then has some instrumental pieces before closing with a few more songs.

But perhaps the set's major importance, historically speaking, will be that it contains what 'must presumably be Alfred Deller's last comprehensive statement on Dowland: all 20 songs here are performed by him, and he has recorded many of them before. At the age of 65, and with an enormous career behind him, he is, of course, going to give performances that must be accepted on their own terms. He keeps the voice extremely soft most of the time, almost crooning into the microphone; and his voice often dies away quite unpredictably in a manner that Apparently represents a careful compromise between the way he now thinks about the songs and the need to treat his voice with care. In Sorrow stay at the end of the second side at the words "but down, down" he allows us to hear the full voice for the first time on the set: it seems a curious moment to choose, but once again it should perhaps be understood in the light of the experience of Deller's improbably long career.

If the singing is difficult to judge objectively, the lute playing of Robert Spencer is unquestionably superb: there are players with more agility and players 'purer' in their instruments and technique but none, I think, more musically attuned to Dowland's pieces. Very soon we shall have all Dowland's lute music on record and quite a lot of -it available in several different recordings: when that happens Spencer's performances here will have to be kept close at hand for purposes of comparison.

In the consort pieces, the Consort of Six play fluently and with good balance: as so often, the sound of this instrumental grouping is not caught quite clearly enough by the engineers, but the quality of the sound is in general very pleasing.

BBC Music Magazine, October 2012
Twenty songs, recorded late in Deller's career when his voice had lost a certain bloom but little of its fascination.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Deller Recordings (09/1977).



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Works Details

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow, my tears, fall from your springs, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1600

>Dowland, John [Composer] : John Dowland's Galliard, for lute, P 21
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Bandora)
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Laiton's Almain, for lute, P 48
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Bandora)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Fortune My Foe, song arranged for lute, P 62
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 3 min. 37 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Frog Galliard, for lute, P 23
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 1 min. 51 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Weep you no more, sad fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1603

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Me, me, and none but me, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1603

>Dowland, John [Composer] : What if I never speed?, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1603

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lasso vita mia, mi fa morire, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1612

>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Shoemaker's Wife, a Toy, for lute, P 58
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse (The Right Honourable Robert, Earl of Essex, his Galliard), galliard for lute, P 42
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 46 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Thing (Mrs White's Choice), almain for lute, P 50
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Round Battle Galliard, for lute, P 39
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 1 min. 36 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Wilt thou unkind thus reave me of my heart, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 41 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come away come sweet love, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sorrow, stay, lend true repentant tears, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1600

>Dowland, John [Composer] : If that a sinner's sighs be angel's food, sacred song for 4 voices & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1612

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mr Dowland's Midnight, almain for lute, P 99
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Say, Love if ever thou didst find, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1603

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lachrimae Pavan, for keyboard or lute (from "Lachrimae")
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 4 min. 36 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1612

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse (The Right Honourable Robert, Earl of Essex, his Galliard), galliard for lute, P 42
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 1 min. 46 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : If my complaints could passions move, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Robert Spencer (Lute); Alfred Deller (Countertenor)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : The Most Sacred Queen Elizabeth, her Galliard (Katherine Darcy's Galliard), for lute, P 41
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 1 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come again, sweet love doth now invite, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : I saw my lady weep, for 2 voices & lute (Second Book of Song)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 59 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1600

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Orlando Sleepeth, arrangement for lute, P 61
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Tarleton's Resurrection, for lute, P 59
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 9 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Sir John Smith, his Almain, for lute, P 47
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs White's Nothing, for lute, P 56
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Chamberlain his Galliard, for 2 to play on 1 lute, P 37
  • Performers: Nigel North (Lute); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 34 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : From silent night, true register of moans, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1612

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Flow not so fast ye fountains, for 4 voices & lute (Third Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1603

>Dowland, John [Composer] : My Lord Willoughby's Welcome Home, for lute, P 66
  • Performers: Nigel North (Lute); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 44 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mrs. Winters Jump, for lute, P 55
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Mellancoly Galliard, for lute, P 25
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1626

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lady Hunsdon's Almain (Lady Hunsdon's Puffe), for lute, P 54
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Shall I sue, shall I seek for grace?, for 4 voices & lute (Second Book of Songs)
  • Performer: Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1600

>Dowland, John [Composer] : In darkness let me dwell, for voice, lute & bass viol (A Musicall Banquet)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1610

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Dowland's First Galliard, for lute, P 22
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 1 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Can she excuse my wrongs, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Come, heavy sleep, for 4 voices & lute (First Book of Songs)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1597

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Captain Piper's Pavan and Galliard, for consort (from Morley's Book)
  • Ensemble: Consort of Six
  • Running Time: 6 min. 39 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Go, nightly cares, the enemy to rest, for voice, trumpet, bass viols & lute (A Pilgrimes Solace)
  • Performers: Alfred Deller (Countertenor); Robert Spencer (Lute)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1612