Sal's flamenco soapbox
 

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Domenico Scarlatti 1685-1757


Summing up
Does it stretch the imagination too much to assume that some of Scarlatti's music found it's way to the streets, and to some interested gypsy ears during the hundred years following his death? If that sounds a bit rich, let's just say that Scarlatti was the first to "record" recognizable flamenco idioms in the form of written notation. To him, these melodies and ideas were nothing more than reflections of the common folk music of his day. To our retrospective ears we could imagine him, rightly or wrongly, as some kind of musical visionary who didn't miss a trick. I like his hairstyle anyway. In the greater scheme of things, I'm just babbling and all this means nothing really. I've probably just wasted ten minutes of your valuable time, but at least you walk away with an historical curiosity you can have strange dreams about.

Make up your own mind
Download this midi collection of Scarlatti "flamenco" sonatas and see what you think.
K24, 105, 116, 144, 146, 175, 201, 239, 255, 404, 414, 443, 444, 450, 485, 490, 491, 492, 502.
Have a good listen to K492. I could swear I heard some Paco de Lucía in there somewhere.
flamenco_sonatas.zip (55k)


References
"This CD includes 14 Scarlatti sonatas, selected for their Spanish flavour - Flamenco song, energetic dance and guitar-like strumming."
CD - "From Lisbon to Madrid" by Penelope Cave

"Well, there's a few, for example, Scarlatti Sonatas that almost prove Scarlatti invented flamenco (laughs). I transcribed them because I think they're great fun to do."
Interview with guitarist David Russell:

"This performance is a lively and colourful programme with some Spanish touches, played on period instruments. These include the enchanting but surprisingly neglected mandolin, shown off here in Domenico Scarlatti's flamenco d minor sonata, one of his six original works for the instrument."
Edinburgh Barock Performance notes

"Your question about Spanish dances is very interesting! Here is, of course, "FLAMENCO"! Scarlatti uses it in many sonatas(for example K. 116 in c minor bars 37-43 and idem in the second half! Three eights bar! "BULERIA" particularly in K. 492 in D major!!! bars 26-34 and idem in the second half. (six eights bar here). Now, this is a dance and a rhythm (what a handiwork to accentuate the weak beat of the bar!!!)! "SEGUIDILLA SEVILLANA" (in K. 491 in D major!!! or K. 239 in f minor!!!). Am I right if I say that it reminds me of a rhythm of the Chopin's polonaises?! Three quavers bar here. "SAETA"(in K. 414 in D major second half!!! wow!!! what a powerful acciaccaturas!, or K. 490 in D major(slower variant)). Four quavers bar here. "TANGO GITANO"(in K. 450 in g minor, four quavers bar). And finally, K. 255 in C major with two cute Portugal dances "OYTABADO" and "TORTORILLA" in three eights bar!"
A message from Marko: - Domenico Scarlatti Discussion Deck

Links
Scarlatti biography
Scarlatti sonatas - Download the lot from Midi World

 

 

 

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