Thomas Binkley's Influence: Twenty five years on
The first time I heard a recording of Studio der Frühen Musik was one of those revelatory moments that change the course of one’s life. The recording of L’Agonie du Languedoc from 1975, recounting the horror of the Albigensian crusade was played during my first-semester Music History class at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. This was a sound of medieval music that I did not know was possible in the interpretation of early music. Listening to it now, I can hear that their collaboration with a singer from Languedoc brought the troubadour poetry close to the intimate interpretations of mid-20th century protest music singer-songwriters such as Victor Jara and Violeta Parra, explaining why I was so surprised to hear medieval European music sung in such a manner. There was a freedom of emotive expression that came through which countered the usual restraint I had known in early music recordings.