Los Esplendores de España

Ana Isabel Arnaz, Soprano

Michael Craddock, Vihuela and Lute



Songs from Airs de Differents Autheurs(Paris 1609, 1614), intabulated by Gabriel Bataille

El baxel está en la playa (1609)

Claros ojos bellos (1609)

Decid como puede ser (1609)

Courante Basel F. IX 53



Vuestros ojos (1609)

Courante (Basel F. IX 53)

Yo soy la locura (1614)

Si sufro por ti morena (1614)

Pues que me das a escoger (1609)

Rio de Sevilla (1609)

Quien quiere entrar conmigo en el barco (1609)




Notes on the Program

The marriage of Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile in 1469 brought an end to internal division in Spain, and during their reign the gradual reconquest of the Iberian Peninsula by Christian kingdoms in the north was completed with the final defeat of the Moors at Granada in 1492. It was a time of prosperity and political stability in which the arts flourished and in which a truly national musical style emerged.

The most characteristic Spanish repertory from the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella (1474-1615) consists of secular songs found in the great cancioneros from the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, the largest (548 villancicos, romances and canciones) and most celebrated of which is the Cancionero Musical de Palacio (c1505-20). It contains the musical repertory of the Spanish court and the predominance of Spanish (i.e. not Flemish) music found in it serves as testimony to native Spanish artistry. Here, refined settings with courtly texts appear side-by-side with folk-like texts and tunes and there is often little distinction between courtly and popular elements. Instead, poets and musicians produced an appealing blend of the two, characterized by technical simplicity, transparent texture and depth of feeling. Originally intended for three or four voices, complete texts appear only under the upper voice, leading some to believe that these compositions were perhaps performed as solo songs with instrumental accompaniment.

The major musical forms represented in the Cancionero Musical de Palacio are the romance and the villancico. The romance (ballad) was primarily a literary form of many strophes and always told some folk tale, drawn most often from legends of border wars with the Moors. Si d’amor pena sentis presents part of a much longer narrative relating the story of Gaiferos. Caballeros de Alcalá is certainly part of a longer tale, but only one strophe has survived. The qualities considered essential in ballad-singing of the period were sweetness and intense emotion.

The majority of pieces in the Cancionero Musical de Palacio are courtly love songs called villancicos. The villancico has a fixed repeat scheme (usually abba) and in musical style resembles the Italian frottola, with which it shares the trait of tonally logical harmonic patterns and progressions. But because it usually lacks the stereotypical dance rhythms of the frottola, the villancico offers a wider range of expressive possibilities than its Italian cousin. Indeed, the freshness of the music can bring genuine expression to the somewhat artificial style of the poetry.

Considering the high quality of the vihuela repertory and the high esteem in which the instrument was held in renaissance Spain, it is odd that only seven books of vihuela music were printed in contrast to the great number of lute books which appeared elsewhere in Europe. The villancicos in books for vihuela, including AlonsoMudarra’s Tres libros de música en cifra (1546) and Miguel de Fuenilana’s Orphénica Lyra (1554), helped keep the villancico tradition alive into the second half of the century and serve as early examples of accompanied solo songs. Most of the songs found in books for vihuela are intabulations of vocal works in which the solo voice part is either included in the tablature in red ciphers or written out separately. Mudarra’s songs differ from those of most other vihuelistas in that he provides independently composed accompaniments.

From 1608 to around 1635, a time coinciding almost exactly with the reign of Louis XIII (1610-1643), the airs de cour were the most important and numerous of vocal compositions in France. These secular, strophic songs, written for the entertainment of the king and his courtiers by the finest composers at court, served French composers as a primary expression of their vocal music for nearly 200 years.

Although the earliest collection of airs de cour, Livre d’airs de cour mix sur la luth par Adrian Le Roy (Paris, 1571) contained 22 songs with lute accompaniment, airs de cour were usually for four or five unaccompanied voices. Many were later arranged for solo voice with lute accompaniment and in all the various collections, there are over 1,000 airs for solo voice and lute. The Airs de différents autheurs, published in Paris by Ballard, was a collection of fifteen books of lute songs, the first six of which (1608-1615) were edited by Gabriel Bataille. The songs in this collection were often published simultaneously with the original versions for vocal ensemble.

The air de cour generally has a formal structure of four to six lines, arranged musically in binary forms (most often AB, AAB, AABB). Melodies and harmonies are often quite simple, and while the essentially syllabic setting of the text lends a certain steadiness of rhythm, many of the songs nevertheless have no regular musical meter because each measure corresponds to an entire line of text, and because the text is set according to its natural linguistic rhythm. There is also some use of musique mesuré, a compositional technique in which accented syllables receive double note values.



Of course the majority of airs de cour are in French, but during the first half of the seventeenth century the French had intellectual and artistic affinities not only with Italy (Italian influence at court was greatly strengthened when Henri II married Catherine de Medici in 1533; Louis XIII was the son of Henri IV and Marie de Medici) but also had a lively interest in the language and literature of Spain. It was said that whoever wanted to pass for an "honest man" endeavored to master Spanish as well as Italian. Spanish music, too, seems to have been appreciated, so it is hardly surprising to find many airs de cour with Spanish texts. Bataille’s 1609 collection alone contains ten Spanish songs, some of which were probably written by French composers. Other, however, bear the stamp of indigenous popular songs. Their simple and easy melodies guaranteed a certain vogue.

The early 17th century was a time of transition for the lute. The lute of the air de cour composers was basically the same as that of the previous century, with the exception of some added bass strings. Composers of solo lute music, on the other hand, began to experiment with new tunings and by the late 1630’s had developed the so-called "Baroque" lute tuning. Basel F. IX. 53, a lute manuscript kept in the university library in Basel, Switzerland, documents this development. Written in at least three different hands, it begins with music in the "old tuning," continues in experimental tunings and ends with music for Baroque lute. The pieces in the old tuning (nearly all are courantes) are mostly in 16th century "division" style, but at the same time offer occasional glimpses of nascent French Baroque lute style, particularly in the use of style brisé (broken style), in which consecutive notes in different octaves of arpeggiated chords pass freely in and out, implying musical lines that are not really there.

Texts and Translations


Caballeros de Alcalá

Caballeros de Alcalá,

Entrastes a faser presa,

Et fallastes un morillo

Entre Estepona a Marbella.

Knights of Alcalá,

you went after prey,

and came across a young Moor

between Estepona and Marbella.


Maravilla es cómo vivo

Marvailla es cómo vivo,

Siendo mi mal el mayor

Del mayor bien del amor.

Maravillado me veo

Cómo la muerte me olvida,

Si no viese que la vida

Me mata más de desseo;

Pues que viva, a cuanto creo,

Porque s’entregue el dolor

De la dueda dell amor.

Si es de más mereçimiento

Quien me mata de cuidado,

Claro está que stoy penado

Con mal que no tiene cuento.

Llega la pena que siento

A la causa del dolor,

Que no puede ser mayor.

En cuanto el bien es mayor,

Hay más duda en esperanza;

De hay más duda hay más dolor,

Con dolor no sé quien calle.

El bien no sé do le halle,

El mal es tan mi señor

Que sufre su desamor.

Its a wonder how I live,

feeling my despair to be

the greatest good of love.

I would be astonished

at how death has forgotten me,

if I didn’t see that life

was killing me more from desire;

so I live, as far as I believe,

to yield to the sorrow

of love’s debts.

If it is more meritorious

you who kills me by caring,

surely it is that I am being punished

with untold despair.

The pain that I feel comes

because of sorrow

that cannot be greater.

Inasmuch as the good is greater,

there is more doubt in hoping:

where there is more doubt there is more sorrow,

and with such sorrow who could be silent?

I don’t know where the good is to be found,

I am a slave to my despair,

I who suffer your disaffection.

Si de amor pena sentis

Si de amor pena sentis,

Por mesura i por bondad

Caballeros, si a Françia is,

Per Gayferos preguntad.

Y desilde que su amiga

Se envían encomendar.

Que sus justas i torneos

Bien lo supimos acá,

Que salió más gentil hombre

Para a las damas loar.

Desidle por nueva çierta

Como me quieren casar;

Mañana hago mis bodas

Con uno de el otro lado del mar.

If you know the pain of love,

out of deference or out of kindness,

knights, if you go to France,

ask for Gayferos.

And tell him that his friend

sends him her regards.

That his jousts and tournaments

are well known to us here,

that he has become a worthy nobleman,

in praise of women.

In particular, tell him the news

of how they want me to marry;

tomorrow I am marrying

someone from across the sea.

Es de tal metal mi mal

Es de tal metal mi mal,

Que’l bien de que se consuela

Más lo (mi mal) atierra y asuela.

Veros, qu’es galardón

De los daños rreçebidos.

A si mismo es ocasión

De hasellos más creçidos.

Mis angustias y gernidos

Amor asi los consuela

Que’el remedio los asuela.

La gloria del pensamiento

Qu’en vos pensando reçibo,

Me haze que siempre vivo

Con más pasión y tormento.

Asi que, si gloria siento,

Es con doblada cautela

Del daño que se revela.

The nature of my suffering is such

that its good consoles my sorrow

more than terrorizes and destroys it.

Seeing you is the reward

for the pain it causes.

Likewise it is the cause

of increased suffering.

In this way love consoles

my anguish and my wailing,

so that the remedy destroys them.

The joy of the thought

that thinking of you brings,

makes me live with ever

more suffering and torment.

So if I feel joy,

It is with redoubled caution

from the pain that reveals itself.

Por ásperos caminos

Por ásperos caminos soy lievado;

a parte, que de miedo no me muevo;

Y si a mudarme a dar un paso pruevo,

Alli por los cabellos soy tomado.

Más mal estoy

que con la muerte a lado.

Busco de mi vivir consejo nuevo;

conozco el mejor y el peor apruevo

O por costumbre mala o por mi hado.

De la otra parte el breve tiempo mio

y el errado proceso de mis años,

Mi inclinación con quien ya no porfio,

la cierta muerte fin de tantos daños,

me hazen descuidar de mi,

de mi remedio.

Down bitter paths I am carried,

in part, I am kept still by fear;

and if I try to take one step

I am pulled back by the hair.

I would be no worse off

were death at my side.

I seek new guidance for my life;

I know what is best but I do the worst

due to bad habits or my fate.

Besides this, the short time I have left,

and the mistaken course of my years,

my desire for whom I no longer trust,

the certain death, end of so much suffering –

these make me neglect myself

and my cure.



Ysabel, perdiste la tu faxa

Ysabel, Ysabel,

Perdiste la tu faxa.

Héla, por do va,

nadando por el agua.

Ysabel, la tan gerrida!

Isabel, Isabel,

you have lost your sash.

Look! There it goes,

floating on the water.

Isabel, the pretty one!

Puse mis amores

Puse mis amores en Fernandico,

traxome engañada con su amor fingido.

Ay, que era casado, mal me ha mentido.

Crei, cuytada, sus dulces engaños,

Cuando vi mis daños,

no me valió nada.

I gave my love to Fernandico,

he deceived me with his false love.

Alas! He was married; he lied to me so wickedly.

I believed him, unhappy me, his sweet deceptions.

When I saw my pain,

nothing mattered to me.

Morenica, dame un beso

Morenica, dame un beso.

—¿Como es eso?

A que esto que has oido

—Oye, afuera, no seais tan atrevido,

—mira que no soy quien quiera.

Dame lo que te dernando,

no seas desagradecida,

mire que tienes mi vida,

continamente penando,

y pues tu me tienes preso.

Dame un beso,

que de merced te lo pido.

Brown-haired girl, give me a kiss.

—How’s that?

I think you heard me.

—Listen, you out there, don’t be so fresh.

—See here, I’m not just anyone.

Give me what I ask,

don’t be disagreeable;

consider that you have my life,

continually suffering;

for you have taken me prisoner.

Give me a kiss,

for pity’s sake I beg you.

El baxel esta en la playa

El baxel esta en la playa

Presto para navegar,

Ay ay ay

Ay quien se quiere embarcar.

Acudan a la marina

Los que fueren del Amor,

Para quitaries su ardor,

Pues que la vela se tira

Al son desta mi bozina

Os quiero yo pregonar,

Ay ay ay…

En pagar el omenaj

A los Dioses del Amor,

A quien quiere navegar

Si se le hara vitrage

Solo tenga buen corage

Quando sentir gritar

Ay ay ay…

The ship is on the beach

ready to sail,

ay, ay, ay

ay, who wants to go?

Come to the shore

you who would belong to love,

In order to give up your ardor;

since the sail jumps to

to the sound of my horn,

I want to announce to you,

Ay, ay, ay…

In paying homage

to the Gods of Love,

you who want to sail,

if you have been betrayed,

you need only have good courage

when you hear the cry

Ay, ay, ay…

Claros ojos bellos

Claros ojos bellos

De Amor se mira,

Y sus flechas tira.

Porque me dais vida

Ojos con mirarme

S’aueys d’acabarme.

O claras estrellas

Vos sereis mi Norte,

Por llevarme a la muerte.

Clear, beautiful eyes

Where Cupid aims,

And shoots his arrows.

Because you give me life,

eyes, in looking at me,

your gaze can also kill me.

O clear stars,

you will be my North

to guide me to death.

Decid cómo puede ser

Decid cómo puede ser

Ojos que estando mirando,

Alegres estéys penando

Y tristes mostréis placer.

Decid ojos con engaño

Voís con mucho contento,

Como tenéis sufrimiento

Para pasar tantos daños?

O qué bien sabéis fingir

Mostrando tener sossiego

Si en viendo dias a sentir

Que abrasáys en biuo fuego.

Y assi pensáys merecer

El bien que esteys desseando,

Alegres esteys penando

Y tristes mostreys plazer.

Sujeta os a padacer

Lo que prendistes mirando,

Alegres estéys penando

Y tristes mostréys plazer.

Tell me how it can be,

eyes, that when looking

happy you are suffering

and when sad you show pleasure.

Tell me, eyes, whose life

of great joy is only a deception,

how you can bear

such suffering?

O, how well you can deceive

by showing great calm,

if, upon seeing, you give the feeling

that you burn with live fire.

And in this way you hope to deserve

the good you desire,

for when happy you are suffering,

and when sad you show pleasure.

Learn to suffer

what you have ignited by looking,

for when happy, you are suffering

and when sad, you show pleasure.










Vuestros ojos tienen d’Amor no se que

Vuestros ojo tienen d’Amor no se que

Que me yelan, me roban,

me hieren, me matan,

Que me matan me matan a fé.

Porque me mirays con tanta aflicción,

Y a mi coraçon me aprisionays,

Que si vos mirays, yo os acusare.

Que me congelan…

The love in your eyes is beyond understanding,

for they freeze me, they rob me,

they hurt me, they kill me,

for they kill me, they kill me, I swear it.

Because your gaze causes such pain,

and you imprison my very soul,

that if you look at me, I will denounce you.

For they freeze me…

Yo soy la locura

Yo soy la locura

La que sola infundo,

Plazer y dulçura

Y contento al mundo.

Sirben a mi nombre

Todos mucho o poco

Y pero no hay hombre

Que piense ser loco.

I am Folly,

who brings

pleasure, sweetness

and joy to the world.

Everyone serves my name,

a lot or a little,

yet no one

thinks he’s crazy.

Si sufro por ti morena

Si suffro por ti morena

Mucho me place mi pena,

Pues van tus ojos mirando

Al mismo sol admirando.

¿Qué te sirve cruel Amor

Atromentame con dolor?

Pues que me place la pena

Que sufro por mi morena.

El mal que me haces sentir

Contento me hace viuir,

Pues yo me huelgo en la pena

Que sufro por mi morena.




Si jamás la olvidaré

El tiempo que yo pasaré

Continuo haga la pena

Pues dexe a mi morena.

If I suffer for you, dark-haired one,

my suffering pleases me greatly;

when you eyes are looking,

the sun itself is dazzled.

How does it serve you, cruel Love,

to torment me with pain,

since I enjoy suffering

for my dark-haired one?

The affliction you make me feel

makes my life happy,

since I am content

in suffering for my dark-haired one.

If I am never to forget her

all the time I live,

make my suffering continuous

and leave me dark-haired one.

Pues que me das a escoger

Pues que me das a escoger

Fortuna de mi querer


Que primero e menester

Tener muy bien de comer

Y no quiero mas.

Vna blanca linda cama,

En ella una hermosa dame

Tu me daras,

Que sea de muy buena fama,

Con que se aplaque mi llama

Y no quiero más.

Despues que sean celebrados

Estos sabrosos bocados,

Tu me daras

Cuatrocientos mil ducados

Para aliviar mis cuidados

Y no quiero más.

Since you allow me to choose

the fortune I desire,

you will understand

that first I need

to eat very well;

and I want nothing more.

You will give me

a beautiful white bed,

and in it a handsome lady

of very good reputation,

with whom to satisfy my desire;

and I want nothing more.

After these tasty morsels

have been praised,

you will give me

four hundred thousand ducats

to alleviate my cares;

and I want nothing more.

Rio de Seuilla

Rio de Seuilla,

Quien te pasase

Sin que la mi seruilla se me mojasse.

Rio de Seuilla arenas d’oro,

Quien to pasase…

Rio do los rios qu’es el primero,

Quien te pasase…

Mis ojos vierten lagrimas biuas,

Quien te pasase…

River of Seville,

oh that I might cross you

without getting my feet wet.

River of Seville, sands of gold,

oh that I might cross…

River of rivers, which is the first,

oh, that I might cross…

My eyes shed flowing tears,

oh, that I might cross…

Quien quiere entrar comigo en el barco

Quien quiere entrar comigo en el barco

Quien quiere entrar comigo en el mar,

Qu yo soy marino y se navegar,

Qu yo soy marinero y voy por el mar.

Es el barco de firmeza,

Y el arbol de sufrimiento

Las entenas de tormento

Y las velas de pureza;

El timón de fortaleza

Con que se ha de navegar.

Who wants to board the ship with me;

who wants to go with me to sea?

For I am a sailor and I know how to sail;

for I am a sailor and I’m going to sea.

It is the ship of steadfastness

and the mast of suffering;

the spars of torment

and the sails of purity;

the rudder of strength

with which one sets sail.





P.O. Box 271193 | Houston TX 77277-1193 | Phone 713-432-1744 | email info@HoustonEarlyMusic.org
Copyright 1996-2003 by Houston Early Music.  Updated May 11, 2003