Unfortunately, according to my understanding, actual manuscripts are scarce
or nonexistant. Of course, we sometimes get biblical cantillation symbols
for medieval Jewish biblical texts, but aside from that...Occasionally the
lyrics to songs in the modern oral traditions bear close resemblance to the
documentably medieval texts, so some inferences can be made from that.
Parallel Christian traditions supposed to be influenced by non-western
musics (i.e., the Cantigas de Santa Maria, dance music, troubadour songs)
can also provide important clues. I was looking through a book on Medieval
Jewish music, and it provided a rare example of a documentably period Ladino
folk song, "Ea Judios"--I played the melody from the given notation, and
found that it bore a STRIKING resemblance to Cantiga 100, "Santa Maria
strela do dia"...
There's a book published by UC Berkeley I'm currently trying to find called
"Ten Hispano-Arabic Songs in the Modern Oral Tradition" by James Monroe and
Benjamin Liu. I've heard that this is an excellent resource for tracing
traditional muwashshahat to their medieval roots. So that's a good book to
try and get a hold of, if you can find it.
en serviçio del sueño,
Todo callado, todo 'stava'n silencio,
Como la nuve'n a la escuridad.
"Miseravle! Porqué vienes agora
Arecordarme del mal que yo pasí,
Arecordarme de toda la mi vida?"
>Subject: [Authentic_SCA] Re: Ethnic Medieval Music
>Date: Wed, Nov 8, 2000, 10:49 AM
> What I'm hoping for at this point is references to help me find the
> medieval and Renaissance sources of non-Christian music, if there are
> any. Especially helpful would be transcriptions of the medieval
> notation into modern, and transcriptions and/or translations of
> Hebrew, Arabic or Ladino texts. I'm basically hoping for something
> like what Van Der Werf did with the troubadour manuscripts, or what
> has been done for the Cantigas de Santa Maria. Since I'm just
> starting out, I don't know if that sort of scholarly material exists
> for any non-Western/Christian traditions. At this point I don't
> really even know what exists in the way of original manuscripts.
> Am I hoping for too much? Is any of this out there?
> Yours in Service,
> Teleri ferch Morgant
> --- In Authentic_SCA@egroups.com, "Stephen Higa" <mitsuo@u...> wrote:
>> My suggestion: find the period texts, find out all you can about
> the music that would've been associated with it (particularly rhythm,
> modes, theory, etc.), listen to the modern traditions, and formulate
> a melody for the text based on that knowledge. Of course, the modern
> "Andalusian" musical tradition in North Africa claims unbroken
> continuity with the medieval Arabo-Andalusian tradition, and those
> Ladino songs also seem to have unbroken links to 15th c. Spain, but
> since we can't be sure, it might be the better bet to create melodies
> anew using the documentably medieval text. My current project is an
> 11th/12th c. Hebrew muwashshah, and in the past I've done the same
> with Beowulf. The medieval music ensemble Altramar (whom I've linked
> in the "Links" section) also does this.
>> e sirviessen a vos,
>> Moshe Mantega
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