Motet Music Recordings

'Motet' is a term used to define a type of choral composition. Throughout time, the term has described different types of choral pieces. It is believed that motets first appeared during the 13th century from certain sequences in liturgical music. The practice of discant over a cantus firmus became the basis for counterpoint in academic Western musical tradition, and from this practice arose the first medieval secular motets. These were compositions for several voices, usually employing different texts in vernacular languages (sometimes more than one language), sung over a cantus firmus adopted from a Gregorian chant. In the late Middle Ages the isorhythmic motet was the norm: repetitive rhythmic patterns were used throughout all the voices. A complex style arose eventually, with the cantus firmus being extended to great lengths, its rhythmic variations no longer evident. During the Renaisance the motet came to be redifined as we know it today. It consisted of a choral polyphonic setting in Latin, sometimes employing imitative counterpoint. The texts used were, in general, was not particular to any liturgical moment, and therefore usable in any service. The motet came to be a form very similar to the madrigal: in fact, many argue that the main difference between motets and madrigals during the Renaissance is merely the purpose of their composition and the language they employ (motets being written in Latin, madrigals in vernacular languages). Of course there were also secular motets and sacred madrigals, blurring the limits of these forms even more.

Title Composer Instrument Period Ratings
Adoramus te Francesco Gasparini Choir Classical
Alle psallite cum luya Anonymous Solo voice(s) Medieval
Also hat Gott die Welt geliebt, SWV 380 Heinrich Schütz Choir Baroque
Ave verum corpus, K. 618 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Choir and Orchestra Classical
Das ist je gewisslich wahr, SWV 277/388 Heinrich Schütz Choir Baroque
Der Engel sprach zu den Hirten, SWV 395 Heinrich Schütz Choir Baroque
Dies sanctificatus Giovanni Palestrina Choir Renaissance
Hodie nobis caelorum rex Claude Goudimel Choir Renaissance
Joseph Lieber Joseph mein Johann Walter Solo voice(s) Renaissance
Motetos de Passos in E-flat major Manoel Dias de Oliveira Horn Classical
Nativitas tua Dei genitrix Giovanni Paolo Cima Voice(s) and Piano Baroque
O dulcedo meliflua Giovanni Andrea Cima Voice(s) and Piano Baroque
Omnes amici mei Carlo Gesualdo Solo voice(s) Renaissance
Selig sind die Toten, SWV 391 Heinrich Schütz Choir Baroque
Sicut cervus Manoel Dias de Oliveira Choir and Instrument Classical
Sicut cervus Giovanni Palestrina Choir Renaissance
Vespere autem Manoel Dias de Oliveira Choir and Orchestra Classical