“Taccio”

Albumleaf 168: April 20, 2020 (Bologna)

The title means “I’m quiet.”

“Phrases from a Warm Weekend in Quarantine”

Albumleaf 167: April 12, 2020 (Bologna)

“Battuta dalla Quarantena”

Albumleaf 166: April 2, 2020 (Bologna)

TEN YEARS AGO today, I posted my first Albumleaf

The original goal was to write three ‘leaves every two weeks.  I came close in 2010, but shortly thereafter production slowed due to parenting and other musical projects.  From 2014, there’s only a single ‘leaf; in 2016, there were none.  In 2018, I decided I had just time enough to get to number 200 by the tenth anniversary, and I sped up composition.  But soon performance opportunities and The Shepheardes Calender—especially the composition of the second (non-Albumleaf) part—intervened, and here I am at 166, well short of 200.  Still, the ‘leaves do average out to more than one per month, and I’m content with that.  (And considering that there are two two-part Albumleaves, numbers 81 and 127, maybe we can call it 168, no?)

Reader, you can imagine what the site’s traffic has been like.   But Albumleaves has been very useful nonetheless and has led—and continues to lead—to other musical opportunities.  The project still interests me, and I have no plans to stop.  If I were more tech-savvy, I’d embark on a thorough redesign.  I have a huge artsy idea for that.  But I’m not there yet. 

So, here you are.  “Battuta dalla Quarantena” (“Joke from the Quarantine”).  It hardly marks the occasion in grand style.  But I get a kick out of it, and it harkens back to the days when the ‘leaves were shorter, less formal, and fell more frequently.

Thanks for listening!


“Dall’orto se ne vien”

Albumleaf 165: March 24, 2020 (Bologna)

“Back from the orchard he comes.” After Filippo Azzaiolo (d. 1570)

“Nebbia / Torre dell’Orologio”

Albumleaf 164: February 11, 2020 (Bologna)

7:55–10:20 (12:27)

6:27–12:59 (14:24)

00:19–05:57 (13:41)

“Boschereccia n. 3 — Il Museo della Musica”

Albumleaf 163: October 18, 2019 (Bologna)

The third boschereccia resembles the first in its wildness, but it is a well-lit room, where we have not lost our bearings.  We contemplate quietly a pair of horns and harps in a display case.  The sounds of these instruments mingle in our mind with the opening phrases of Josquin’s “Ave maria . . . virgo serena,” a copy of which is in the Odhecaton A (also found in the museum).  After a final horn call and a measure of silence, the melody from the first boschereccia returns and finds resolution.

“Boschereccia n. 2 — Palazzo d’Accursio”

Albumleaf 162: October 10, 2019 (Bologna)

This boschereccia is a more civilized room, with symmetrical, framed frescoes and a much less reverberant acoustic.  Perhaps a social gathering is underway, the music blending with the small-group conversations scattered around the room.  The homophonic texture continues from the first movement’s conclusion; repeated notes evoke the play of water in the fountains painted on the walls.  At the end, we turn away from the hubbub to observe the stillness of a statue in the room’s center.