Hardcover: 266 pages
Publisher: University of Rochester Press (2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1580465331
ISBN-13: 978-1580465335

Italian Guitar Music of the Seventeenth Century:

Battuto and Pizzicato

In the seventeenth century, like today, the guitar was often used for chord strumming ("battuto" in Italian) in songs and popular dance genres, such as the ciaccona or sarabanda. In the golden age of the baroque guitar, Italy gave rise to a unique solo repertoire, in which chord strumming and lute-like plucked ("pizzicato") styles were mixed. Italian Guitar Music of the Seventeenth Century: Battuto and Pizzicato explores this little-known repertoire, providing a historical background and examining particular performance issues.

“With nearly 400 extant printed and manuscript sources for the five-course guitar, including early versions of such important dances as the ciaccona, folia, sarabanda, and passacaglia, the sound of the strummed guitar was a part of the world of seventeenth-century music. The Italian part of this repertoire contains the largest and most influential music for the instrument, yet it is generally ignored today. Italian Guitar Music of the Seventeenth Century will go a long way in moving scholarship towards a reconsideration of the guitar as an integral part of the Baroque era in Italy.”
—Gary Boye, Appalachian State University

Two illustrations from this book in color

The next two illustrations are printed in the book in black and white. When reproduced in color the difference in thickness of the two strings of the fifth course (the two uppermost strings on the picture) can be seen more clearly.

Figure 6.2b. Detail from The Guitar Player. The arrangement of the fifth course with a thick and a thin string. Anonymous painting (c. 1610–30). Courtesy of the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. © Lex Eisenhardt.

Figure 6.2c. Detail from The Guitar Player. The strings at the nut.
© Lex Eisenhardt.

Online Reviews:

William Carter in Early Music Review
Gérard Rebours (in French) in 'Guitaremag'
Olav Chris Henriksen in Early Music America