Clément Janequin (c. 1485 -- 1558) was a French
composer of the Renaissance. He was one of the most
famous composers of popular chansons of the entire
Renaissance, and along with Claudin de Sermisy, was
hugely influential in the development of the Parisian
chanson, especially the programmatic type. The wide
spread of his fame was made possible by the concurrent
development of music printing.
Few composers of the Renaissance were more popular in
their lifetimes than Janequin. His chansons were
well-loved and widely sung. The Paris printer Pierre
Attaingnant printed five volumes with his chansons. La
bataille, which vividly depicts the sounds and activity
of a battle, is a perennial favorite of a cappella
singing groups even in the present day.
The programmatic chansons for which Janequin is famous
were long, sectional pieces, and usually cleverly
imitated natural or man-made sounds. Le chant des
oiseaux imitates bird-calls; La chasse the sounds of a
hunt; and La bataille (Escoutez tous gentilz), probably
the most famous, and almost certainly written to
celebrate the French victory over the Swiss
Confederates at the Battle of Marignano in 1515,
imitates battle noises, including trumpet calls, cannon
fire and the cries of the wounded Onomatopoeic effects
such as these became a commonplace in later 16th
century music, and carried over into the Baroque era;
indeed "battle music" was to become a cliché, but it
first came into prominence with Janequin.
Although originally written for Voice (SATB) and
Continuo, I created this arrangement for Woodwind
Quartet (Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet & Bassoon).