In many ways it is a breed apart from the others. That you are my love? Is my beloved. Here are a few of the best performances on YouTube. Our first example is a video performance of an excellent soprano accompanied by a lute player.
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Life[ edit ] Little is known about his early life, but he was born in Italy, the son of the carpenter Michelangelo Caccini; he was the older brother of the Florentine sculptor Giovanni Caccini.
In Rome he studied the lute , the viol and the harp , and began to acquire a reputation as a singer. By , Caccini was singing at the Medici court.
He was a tenor , and he was able to accompany himself on the viol or the archlute ; he sang at various entertainments, including weddings and affairs of state, and took part in the sumptuous intermedi of the time, the elaborate musical, dramatic, visual spectacles which were one of the precursors of opera. In the last two decades of the 16th century, Caccini continued his activities as a singer, teacher and composer.
Caccini made at least one further trip to Rome, in , as the secretary to Count Bardi. According to his own writings, his music and singing met with an enthusiastic response. After , Caccini was less influential, though he continued to take part in composition and performance of sacred polychoral music.
He died in Florence, and is buried in the church of St. Music and influence[ edit ] The stile recitativo, as the newly created style of monody was called, proved to be popular not only in Florence, but elsewhere in Italy. Florence and Venice were the two most progressive musical centers in Europe at the end of the 16th century, and the combination of musical innovations from each place resulted in the development of what came to be known as the Baroque style.
MIDI rendition Problems playing this file? See media help. Although it is often considered the first published collection of monodies, it was actually preceded by the first collection by Domenico Melli published in Venice in March stile veneto , in which the new year began on 1 March. This likely explains why the collection is often dated to He writes: Having thus seen, as I say, that such music and musicians offered no pleasure beyond that which pleasant sounds could give — solely to the sense of hearing, since they could not move the mind without the words being understood — it occurred to me to introduce a kind of music in which one could almost speak in tones, employing in it as I have said elsewhere a certain noble negligence of song, sometimes passing through several dissonances while still maintaining the bass note save when I wished to do it the ordinary way and play the inner parts on the instrument to express some effect — these being of little other value.
The introduction is also important in the history of music theory, as it contains the first attempt to describe the figured bass of the basso continuo style of the Seconda pratica. Caccini writes: Note that I have been accustomed, in all places that have come from my pen, to indicate with numbers over the bass part the thirds and the sixths — major when there is a sharp, minor when a flat — and likewise when sevenths or other dissonances are to be made in the inner voices as an accompaniment.
It remains only to say that ties in the bass part are used thusly by me: after the [initial] chord, one should play again only the notes [of the harmony] indicated [and not the bass note again], this being if I am not mistaken most fitting to the proper usage of the archlute and easiest way to manage and play it , granted that this instrument is more suitable for accompanying the voice, especially the tenor voice, than any other.
It is even indicated by Caccini as a "note"; an aside or addendum to the main purpose. It is important to observe, however, that the first explanation of this practice is in the context of an essay about vocal expression and intelligibility. Indeed, it was largely the aim of textual intelligibility that led to the development of this musical style, and to the music of the common practice period.
Works[ edit ] Caccini wrote music for three operas — Euridice , Il rapimento di Cefalo , excerpts published in the first Nuove musiche , and Euridice , though the first two were collaborations with others mainly Peri for the first Euridice.
In addition he wrote the music for one intermedio Io che dal ciel cader farei la luna No music for multiple voices survives, even though the records from Florence indicate he was involved with polychoral music around He was predominantly a composer of monody and solo song accompanied by a chordal instrument he himself played harp , and it is in this capacity that he acquired his immense fame.
He published two collections of songs and solo madrigals , both titled Le nuove musiche , in new style and the latter as Nuove musiche e nuova maniera di scriverle. Most of the madrigals are through-composed and contain little repetition; some of the songs, however, are strophic.
Among the most famous and widely disseminated of these is the madrigal Amarilli, mia bella.
Amarilli, mia bella (Caccini, Giulio)