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A delightful airing

The keyboard music of
Matthew Locke -
reviewed by

'... crisp and lively ...'

Matthew Locke - Complete Keyboard Works - Terence Charlston. © 2003 Deux-Elles Ltd

Let Thomas Tudway set the scene: 'His majesty, who was a brisk and airy prince, coming to the crown in the flower and vigour of his age, was soon, if I may so say, tired with the grave and solemn way which had been established by Tallis, Bird, and others.' Matthew Locke is supposed to have written the music for Charles II's London entry in 1660. He probably knew Charles from the days he was organising Royalist troops from Exeter Cathedral, where young Matthew was a chorister. In 1648 they were both in the Netherlands, and Locke became a Catholic, the more suited to Catherine of Braganza's chapel when queen. The CD reprints the portrait of Locke attributed to Isaac Fuller and now in the Oxford Faculty of Music. It is mentioned by Dr Burney in connection with the combativeness and asperity of Locke's writings. The countenance produced an unfavourable effect: 'we are impressed with more than a suspicion of his ungentleness and want of urbanity'.

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Copyright © 16 November 2003 Robert Anderson, London UK


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