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Bach 'Bourree' Introduction


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Bach 'Bouree' From Lute Suite in E Minor

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Johann Sebastian Bach (J. S. Bach; or just Bach) (1685-1750) is one of the most important composers in history. Perhaps only second to Beethoven. He was a Baroque Era multi-instrumentalist and one of the most prolific composers in history. He wrote in almost every major form (choir, orchestra, and solo instruments). His music is quite simply the foundation and backbone of the entire canon of Western Music.

In this tutorial we will learn the most well-known movement of this Lute Suite in E minor, BWV 996, the 'Bourree'. The piece was originally written by Bach for lute or lute-harpsichord. In modern times it is traditionally performed on the guitar.

Baroque Binary Form is a type of formal structure used by many early composers. As the name ("binary") suggests it is a piece made of 2 sections. Bach used it in this piece, the "Bouree" from his Lute Suite in E Minor. The first section was typically 8 to 16 measures long and repeated. Then the second section followed, it was typically twice as long. Therefore it was usually 16 or 32 measures and also repeated.

This particular piece is very well known as the piece that starts with the a "voice exchange" excerpt I play in the video. It's the very first thing that happens in the piece.

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