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Louis Bourgeois

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This French composer and theorist helped to revise the Calvinist Psalter although the complete effect that Loys Bourgeois had will not be known.
He was given leave by Calvin to work on the Psalter, whereupon he fell into a number of legal difficulties. Nevertheles, his work was finished. It had great appeal because he arranged it so that the tenor voice setting was an octave below the melody. An amateur could thus sing the soprano or tenor and not concern themselves with the highly complex other voices. Besides his contested work on the Calvinist Psalter, Bourgeois composed Psalms for four voices, chansons, retranslated the poems of Marot and de Beze, and wrote a manuel in French for sight-reading, "Le droict chemin". Regarding the ideations of Protestant leaders, he also did not agree with their position that church music should only be vocal; instrumental music was not allowed. Accordingly he attempted to advance instrumental music. Interestingly, Bourgeois also advocated the study of mathematics for all musicians. ~ Keith Johnson, Rovi

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