Sound the Trumpets
Hannes Läubin, Wolfgang Läubin, Bernhard Läubin (trumpet)
Norbert Schmitt (timpani), Don Smithers (trumpet and cornetto), Alan Lumsden (trombone), Simon Preston (organ and harpsichord), Kenneth Sillito and Iona Brown (violins), Cecil Aronowitz (viola), Desmond Dupré (gamba and chittarone); Adam Skeaping (violine)
rec. 1985, Dom, Lübeck (Music for trumpets and organ), July 1990, Abbey Road No.1, London (Trumpet Concertos) and April 1968, Kingsway Hall, London (Music for trumpet and cornetto)
ELOQUENCE 4828629 [80:17 + 80:26]
The recordings in this reissued twofer represent the contents of three LPs; two DGs recorded in 1985 and 1990 and an Argo LP from 1968. The binding element is Simon Preston who appears in all three recordings as organist, harpsichordist and conductor – though not all at the same time. Even given the plethora of Preston reissues in his 80th birthday year not even he could do all three simultaneously.
The ‘Music for Trumpets and Organ’ disc features an array of arrangers – the names of Michael S Murray, Robert King, Friedrich Held and Frank Campbell-Watson are prominent here, though there are a number of others – and is dominated by the trumpeting Läubin brothers, Hannes, Wolfgang and Bernhard. For a couple of pieces some added electricity is provided by timpanist Norbert Schmitt. This baroque repertoire is played with the kind of technical finesse that one would expect of the Läubin trio, even though the music’s charms lean more to the undemanding end of the spectrum. Preston’s role is largely supportive but if he were a jazzer he would have been said to have claimed the middle eight for a solo on the arrangement from Samson and he does at least have two pieces to himself; a commandingly dispatched Buxtehude Ciacona in E minor and Purcell’s Voluntary for Double Organ. Elsewhere the gleaming, glistening virtuosity of the trumpet-heavy trio is paramount and the brief concluding chorales from three Bach cantatas are expertly done.
The ‘Trumpet Concertos’ disc features standard, authentic works with Preston directing the English Chamber Orchestra in a sequence of concertos for one, two and three trumpets. The Gabrieli-like bravura of the two-trumpet concerto (Hannes and Wolfgang) makes the Vivaldi Concerto in C a standout reading though it’s equally good that the performers mined earlier repertoire in the shape of Petronio Franceschini’s Sonata for two trumpets, strings and continuo. Its Renaissance-leaning elements contrast well with the surrounding Baroque blockbusters and indeed the transcription of Albinoni’s Oboe Concerto Op.7/3. Johann Valentin Rathgeber’s Concerto sports appropriate ornamentation from Günther Beetz.
In the final LP, Eloquence turns to ‘Music for trumpet and cornetto’ in which the American Don Smithers is centre-stage. Smithers came to the instrument very late – he was almost in his mid-20s - but rapidly absorbed the precepts of the baroque trumpet movement, and then taught himself the cornetto for good measure. Teamed with some of Britain’s string luminaries and with fellow brass player, trombonist Alan Lumsden, he played a wide-ranging programme during which Preston accompanies tastefully either on organ or harpsichord. Andrea Grossi’s Sonata Decima à 5 is alternately delicate and high spirited, Smithers digs out a suite by Coprario – not so unusual now, but certainly then – but also pays attention to Corelli as well. The string players offer expressive phrasing and vibratos in Cazzati’s Sonata, whilst the instrumental exchanges in Buonamente’s Sonata Quinta à 2 are particularly sprightly. This is a pleasing restoration of a programme that is well balanced and attractive.
The booklet documentation reprints original notes, including those written by Preston and Smithers. In addition, most valuably, the Smithers album is available here for the first time on CD.
Trumpet Concerto in B flat major
Johann Sebastian BACH
Cantata BWV31 'Der himmel lacht! Die erde jubilieret';Sonata
Cantata BWV41 'Jesu, nun sei gepreiset'; Dein ist allein die Ehre
Cantata BWV130 'Herr Gott dich alle loben wir'; Darum wir billig loben dich
Cantata BWV137 'Lobe den Herrn, den machtigen Konig der Ehren'; Chorale: Lobe den Herren
Cantata BWV147 'Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben'; Jesu bleibet meine Freude (Jesu, joy of man's desiring)
Sonata quarta a due
Ciacona in E minor, BuxWV160
Ihr lieben Christen, freut euch nun, BuxWV51
Sonata a 5 'La Bianchina'
Marche de Triomphe et Air de Trompette
Sonata in D major
Sonata in D
Canzon terza a due canti
Sonata decima a 5
George Frideric HANDEL
Judas Maccabaeus, HWV63; See, the conqu'ring hero comes
Samson, HWV57; Awake the trumpet's lofty sound
Trio Sonatas (6), op.2; no.3 in B flat major, HWV388
Symphonies de fanfare
Sound the trumpet, Z335
Voluntary for double organ, Z719
Concerto for 2 trumpets, 2 violins and continuo in E flat major, op.6 no.15
Toccata in D minor
Georg Philipp TELEMANN
Concerto in D major for 3 trumpets, 2 oboes, timpani, strings and b.c, TWV54:D3
Concerto in D major for 3 trumpets, timpani, strings and b.c. TWV54:D4
Concerto for 2 trumpets in C major, RV537
Giovanni Buonaventura VIVIANI