Jenkins's Lute Music: An Approach to
Reconstructing the Lost Multitudes
of Lute Lessons
Information on Jenkins as a player comes from three groups of records: court documents and accounts, references to him in the Burwell Lute Tutor, and comments made by Roger North. Taken together these give us some idea of Jenkins the lutenist. Sadly it seems that not a single piece of music by him survives in any source of lute music that has yet come to light. One approach to rectifying this loss is to adapt pieces by him from lyra-viol and baryton sources. Lute music and lyra-viol music in Caroline England had much in common, and it is clear that pieces for one instrument can easily be adapted for the other. There are also indications that this was a contemporary practice.1 This paper seeks to review all the source information on Jenkins as a lute-player, leading to the formulation of an approach to making a stylistically correct and idiomatic adaptation into lute music of suitable pieces by Jenkins from baryton and lyra-viol sources. Finally some of the resulting lute pieces are presented alongside the originals.
Roger North indicates that Jenkins was a court musician in pre-Restoration times,2 but there is no mention of him in royal accounts before 1660. We____________________
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Publication information: Book title: John Jenkins and His Time:Studies in English Consort Music. Contributors: Andrew Ashbee - Editor, Peter Holman - Editor. Publisher: Clarendon Press. Place of publication: Oxford, England. Publication year: 1996. Page number: 309.
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