Free-to-download recordings of lute, vihuela,theorbo and early guitar performed by Rob MacKillop.
“We are entering a new era of the listening experience, one which many record companies are struggling to understand and keep up with. The CD concept of 60 to 70 -minute programmes centered around a single composer or manuscript no longer seems relevant to the new download culture. As a performer I try to look upon the positive aspects of this new relationship between artist and listener. I take my cue from old lute and guitar manuscripts which often contain music from various sources and for a variety of instruments. I can even upload various versions of the same piece (see, for instance, three versions of Mille Regretz on the vihuela page).
As a listener I was often frustrated over the difficulty of finding and ordering non-mainstream recordings of lutes, vihuelas, etc, and once located, having to pay shipping costs, import duty, etc on top. As a performer, I have been frustrated over the inability of the record companies to get the 'product' on the shelves, not just around the world, but even within my own city.
I have decided to make any future recordings at home, with immediate upload to this website. I can record whatever I want, whenever I feel moved to, and have it online within minutes. I hope the listener will appreciate the immediacy of the performances as much as their easy access online.
I have also decided to use the absolute minimum of editing. Few listeners are aware that many lute CDs contain over 100 edits, sometimes many hundreds. The technology in advanced studios - and increasingly so in the home studio - allows for the most microscopic changes to notes, finger noise, tuning, etc, etc. It is the view of many that this is leading to a false image of the performer as being technically perfect, and ultimately the recording lacks the immediacy of a genuine performance. All the recordings on this site are single takes. If I do make a very noticeable mistake, for example in a piece with an A and a B section, I will, without stopping, repeat the entire section. I then extract the whole section with the offending note. By this method, the listener hears the same performance, same tuning and tempo. Small errors are not subject to any editing. It is my hope that the listener will appreciate this method. Comments welcome.
18 April, 2008 “
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Added on: Jul 25, 2009 | Hits: 968