Early American Roots, a companion book to Hesperus' CD of the same name, presents a cross section of popular instrumental music from the English Colonies and early Federal America; divisions, shape note hymns, country dances and cotillions, arranged for the Recorder. When America was still a colony, music in the New World was a welcome link to the settlers' original home; England, Holland, France, Germany, Ireland and Scotland.
During the 18th century, as the colonies became independent from England, their music reflected this new freedom in its unusual textures and dissonances. Recorders and Flageolets (the wooden predecessor to the Tin Pennywhistle) were easily carried about and made excellent solo instruments for both the new and old styles of music. They arrived in the New World in pockets, packs and bundles.
Scott Reiss, the "mind boggling" Recorder player and HESPERUS' co-director, arranges all the tunes on the CD for Recorders, writing down every improvised ornament, slur and counter melody. Use this book as a technical study guide as well as a source of performing and arranging ideas. An invaluable guide to a little-known, but lively repertoire.