Like the Renaissance itself, Music for the Spanish Kings begins with a strutting fanfare and ends with a melancholic sigh. Attaining his usual high standards, Jordi Savall has fashioned a poignant and varied musical portrait of the century encompassing the reigns of three Spanish kings: Alphonso I (1442-58), Ferdinand I (1458-94), and Charles V (1516-56). Montserrat Figueras' rich mezzo-soprano voice carries over half the pieces on the first disc. Her stunning vibrato imparts a troupadour's sadness to the cancions.
Francisco de Asís Palacios Ortega (Paco to his friends), better known as the "Pali", born May 22, 1928 in the central neighborhood of La Casa de la Moneda de Sevilla and dies in the same city in 1988 Andalusian at age 60. The nickname seems to be that it is because in his youth was thin as a "stick" nothing to do with the image that is identified in the photographs of his albums since "The Pali" eventually gained weight and had to overcome their myopia with glasses whose lenses were increasing the so-called "bottle-ass." Your fat and glasses gave him that peculiar aspect which remind people of Seville, and who disappeared in 1988 and was buried as said on one of their Sevillanas "With my flag of Spain."
The studio sessions within this CD were produced by Charles Delauney in Paris during the late '30s, when a number of prominent Americans were either passing through or temporarily taking up residence in Europe. Django Reinhardt was a relative newcomer to jazz, but quickly became a leading player on the continent, and is present on four very different sessions in this collection. A quartet led by cornetist Rex Stewart includes fellow Ellington veterans Barney Bigard on clarinet and bassist Billy Taylor, though the Americans and their gypsy guitarist eschew the Ellington songbook and find their own sound in a date dominated by originals written by Stewart or Taylor. Reinhardt is prominently featured as a soloist and proves himself in ensembles as well as backing others' solos.