Spanish Renaissance composer Francisco Guerrero was born in Seville, possibly on 4 October 1528, and received most of his early musical training from an elder brother. He became maestro de capilla at Jaén Cathedral when he was only seventeen, and by the time he was thirty had built up a considerable reputation as both composer and singer.
Most of his life was spent working in Seville, with a year in Italy, but in 1589 he travelled to Damascus, Bethlehem and Jerusalem, returning to Spain penniless after his ship was attacked by pirates. He published the story of his adventures in 1590 and the book sold well. Whilst planning a second adventure, he died in the plague in Seville, on 8 November 1599.
Guerrero wrote both sacred and secular works, in a surprisingly wide variety of moods.
A selection of M&V articles about Francisco Guerrero
Ensemble. In Complete Command - Britten's 'The Company of Heaven' and Renaissance Polyphony, heard by Mike Wheeler