Will Hermes
December 19, 2003 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Dowland Project: Carecharming Sleep

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
performer
John Potter
Producers
ECM

We gave it a B

Released in 2000, In Darkness Let Me Dwell was one of the year’s true sleepers: a gorgeous set of lute songs by lachrymose late-16th-and early-17th-century composer John Dowland performed by Hilliard Ensemble vocalist John Potter with a hint of dark blue jazz flavor. This set reconvenes his group — including supple Euro-jazz reed player John Surman — to reshape songs and madrigals by Dowland’s contemporaries and successors. The selections may be less exquisitely sad, perhaps, but are no less beautiful. FACT-CHECKING DEPT. The writer of ”Care-charming Sleep,” Robert Johnson, is not the soul-selling Delta bluesman, but a court lutenist for England’s King James I.

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