AMATE: LOVE SONGS IN CLOSE HARMONY
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About this release
Founded in 1973, Cantores Episcopi is the close harmony group of Winchester College comprising some of its finest musicians, brought together by a passion for singing a cappella music. In their debut commercial album, they perform contemporary arrangements of well-known songs.
Commissioned Programme Note
Love songs come in many different guises, displaying a range of emotions from the excitement of falling in love, to the joy of being in love, or the heartbreak of lost love. Of course these sentiments have been around for ever, and such descriptions can be found in the histories and cultures of all societies. These usually take the form of a lyrical, musical or poetic expression of romantic love. Love is a sentiment that people often find hard to put into words, unable to describe the real feelings that it invokes and hence expression through art often provides a more manageable medium for the most intangible of emotions.
With the advent of recorded sound and developments in sound production and technology, the love song has become very popular, both in the popular and classical music worlds. In the wonderful world of close harmony singing, the love song is particularly popular, thanks to the talented musicians arranging songs for groups such as The King’s Singers, notably Philip Lawson (a former member of the group), and, more recently, Alexander L’Estrange. Amate offers just a small selection of some of our personal favourites exploring the theme of love. Amongst the repertoire presented here are arrangements by Lawson and L’Estrange, offering sumptuous chords and harmonies to accompany some of the wonderful melodies originally composed by the likes of Cole Porter, Billy Joel and The Beach Boys. With one or two home-grown pieces thrown in for good measure, we hope this makes the perfect disc for that special loved one, or perhaps to celebrate the Feast of St Valentine or to rekindle a happy memory. Let’s face it… all you need is love!
(Jamal Sutton, 2017)
About the artists
Cantores Episcopi is the close harmony group of Winchester College comprising some of its finest musicians, brought together by a passion for singing a cappella music. The group provides an opportunity for boys to explore the secular side of the choral repertoire, stepping outside the cassocks and the stalls of the College Chapel Choir.
Founded in 1973, the group has enjoyed an unbroken tradition since its beginnings, of fun-filled close harmony singing, exploring a vast repertoire of popular songs, famous arrangements and home-grown compositions. The name Cantores Episcopi, ‘The Bishop’s Singers’, was chosen because four of the original five members of the group had previously sung as choristers in choirs connected with William of Wykeham (at New College, Oxford, Winchester College or Winchester Cathedral) and found themselves together in his school. Over the years about half of the members have moved on to university choral scholarships, and many have embarked upon successful singing careers.
Cantores Episcopi give numerous concerts through the year, both at home and further afield. In recent years, the group has collaborated with Aurum Vocale consort group, and also with The King’s Singers. The group has toured to Colombia in 2011, 2014 and 2017, performing as part of an outreach project with schools and youth orchestras in Bogota and Cartagena. Amate is the third disc under its current director Jamal Sutton; Steal Away Home: Folksongs and Spirituals, recorded in 2015 and Christmas with Cantores, recorded in 2012, are also available for purchase from Winchester College.
- Thou, my love, art fair - Bob Chilcott
- When I fall in love - Victor Young, arr. Alexander L'Estrange
- It's de-lovely - Cole Porter, arr. Alexander L'Estrange
- Le Baylère - Trad., arr. Goff Richards
- A groovy kind of love - Phil Collins, arr. Philip Lawson
- Home - Amy Foster-Gillies, Alan Chang and Michael Bublé, arr. Alexander L'Estrange
- Night and day - Cole Porter, arr. Alexander L'Estrange
- I get around - Brian Wilson & Mike Love, arr. Jamal Sutton
- God only knows - Brian Wilson, arr. Jacob Thorn
- And so it goes - Billy Joel, arr. Bob Chilcott
- Lullabye (Goodnight, my angel) - Billy Joel, arr. Philip Lawson
Catalogue Number: CR041
Ensemble Cantores Episcopi
Counter-tenor Joseph Zubier, Jamal Sutton
Tenor Maxim Meshkvichev
Baritone Jacob Thorn, Samuel Grew
Bass Jonathan Hedley
Engineering Adaq Khan
Mastering Adaq Khan
Producer Andrew King, David Hurley
Creative Director Mike Cooter
Executive Producer Adrian Green
Recorded 24, 25 September, 2016
Venue Winchester College Music School
Total Duration 40 mins