R. Jones, Sets of Lessons for the Harpsichord, M. Meyerson
(released on August 23, 2010)
Glossa GCD 921805 | 112'21"
[Listen to Excerpts]
R. Jones, Chamber Airs for a Violin (and Thorough Bass), K.-M. Kentala, L. Pulakka, M. Meyerson
(released on August 3, 2012)
Glossa GCD921806 | 66'12"
The six keyboard suites were published in the French music edition Le Pupitre, so not exactly unknown, but Meyerson worked from a copy of the original 1732 print ("It was simply too good to leave silent," Meyerson said in an interview for the new CD booklet). The music is extraordinarily pleasing to the ear, which makes one wonder how he could have been so utterly forgotten. We do not know much about him, except that he played with the Drury Lane Theater Orchestra, becoming its leader in 1730, and was held in high enough esteem as a player and teacher to merit a couple brief mentions by John Hawkins in A General History of the Science and Practice of Music, where he is called Dicky Jones. It is somewhat unusual for a violinist to have written such high-quality harpsichord pieces, albeit in a style that often seems to recall violin writing, and the sonatas for his primary instrument confirm his melodic invention, harmonic daring, and originality. Meyerson has partnered with violinist Kreeta-Maria Kentala and cellist Lauri Pulakka, a trio they have taken to calling the Jones Band, and the playing is vivid in tone but with some nice variation in the harpsichord registration. One can only hope that more of his music -- he is known to have composed masques and ballad operas for the stage -- will be recovered by some lucky musicologist toiling away in an obscure archive somewhere.