2023:   Stefan Markos  I Will Endure: the Mantras of Frater Perdurabo


Stefan Markos’s first solo album in about 30 years. These are arrangements/interpretations of the mantras in Aleister Crowley’s Liber ABA (Book Four). Stef chants, and plays a number of instruments: lute, guitar, psaltery, dulcimer, feadog, pipe & tabor, fujara, bladderpipe, buisine, rauschpfeife, kalimba, systrum, recorder, singing bowl, resting bell, and hurdy-gurdies.

The album will be available as a download, or as a CD, or as a deluxe CD/booklet combo with ‘mantra cards,’ as seen on the album cover art: these are block print original artworks, designed, cut, and imprinted by Stefan.

2022:   Paula T & Co  Songs to Sigh (or Cry) to


I played alto and tenor recorders on this album (although I suspect that one of them got scrapped in the final edit). Although it’s a small contribution to one track, it’s a real honor to be a part of this recording. I am in awe of all the talent featured here. Paula Tesoriero reminds me of the singer-songwriters that I hold dear, like Sandy Denny and Vashti Bunyan, but in a category all her own. This album is all original music and lyrics, perfect for private listening on a rainy day, or late at night for introspective moments under the moon and stars. Run out and buy it. Buy some for your friends.

2018:   Brimstone Rhine Corbeau Blanc, Corbeau Noir
I played a variety of instruments on this album, which was engineered by former student, Green Street member, and all-around terrific guy Jeremy Cooney.
Recording this was a delightful experience: the sessions were full of positive and supportive creativity, full of wonder and appreciation for everyone’s abilities and offerings. What a joyful way to spend a summer in Phoenix!

Brimstone Rhine at Bandcamp



The Red Book

BF RB CD cover

Bartholomew Faire  directed by Stefan Dollak

On this recording, I sang, played lute, cornemuse, pipe & tabor, hurdy-gurdies, ocarina, recorder, and the pipe & string drum.  I also researched the music, created the performing editions, directed the ensemble, and bossed people around.  The CD was recorded in two nights, all ‘live,’ with no overdubs.

This is the "second edition" cover variant, circa 2007.

This is the “second edition” cover variant, circa 2007.

BF RB 3rd ed

Third edition cover, circa 2015

A review of "The Red Book" from Renaissance Magazine Vol. 16, #6 (issue 82)

A review of “The Red Book” from Renaissance Magazine Vol. 16, #6 (issue 82)


Goddesses, Virgins & Tarantulas


Bartholomew Faire  directed by Stefan Dollak

An all-instrumental CD recorded in November 2007 in two marathon recording sessions, with overdubs.  I played lute, recorders, pipe & tabor, rauschpfeife, bladderpipe, hurdy-gurdies, mandolin, pipe & string drum, krummhorn, and the rankett.  Basically, a fun mix of medieval Spanish Cantigas melodies, Renaissance dances, Playford country-dance tunes, and Celto-baroque melodies.

A review of "Goddesses, Virgins & Tarantulas" from Renaissance Magazine, Vol 16, #5 (issue 81)

A review of “Goddesses, Virgins & Tarantulas” from Renaissance Magazine, Vol 16, #5 (issue 81)


Qais Essar

Tavern of Ruin

On this CD, I played hurdy-gurdy. Qais is a multi-instrumentalist specializing in the Afghan rabab. Occasionally I play in his pick-up ensemble, Qais and the Qosmonauts.



Me playing with Qais and the Qosmonauts, Phoenix 2015. Note the plugged-in hurdy-gurdy.



Josquin on the Desert

Cap Son CD cover

Cappella Sonora, directed by James De Fazio

I sang, and played lute, pipe & tabor, and the hurdy-gurdy on this CD.  The first half presents Josquin’s superb “Missa Sine Nomine” which features a very fascinating puzzle-canon approach to composition: the casual listener might not notice that the four-part harmony was, in several movements, written in two parts, with Latin instructions on how to ‘unlock’ the other parts, where to begin them, and what the harmonic interval might be.  This, of all the Josquin masses, demonstrates the composer’s sheer genius.

In the second half of the CD, I accompany or interpret some Josquin chansons.  The “Mille Regretz” medley is actually an old Musica Ficta arrangement of mine, in which I play the lute and sing an imagined solo chanson based on the melody, then we “ooo” the four-part harmonies from Susato’s Danserye, finishing with the Josquin chanson.  The pipe & tabor interpretation of “Scaramella” was improvised in the studio.


Christmas at the Renaissance Fair

Moat Jumper CD cover

Moat Jumper, directed and produced by Joe Mattzie

I played hurdy-gurdy, bladderpipe, pipe & string drum, pipe & tabor, rauschpfeife (listed as “shawms” in the CD booklet), rankett (listed as “Kell horn”), mandora, SATB recorders, crumhorn, and pennywhistle.  The multitracking of my parts was engineered by Nick Medlock.

Joe Mattzie, a New York Renaissance Faire buddy from the old days, contacted me about this project.  Through the aether, he sent MIDI files and lead sheets with brief instructions on arrangement, basically allowing me to be as creative as I wanted.

A review of "Christmas at the Renaissance Fair" from Christianity Today magazine. They didn't care for Mannheim Steamroller, but they loved the hurdy-gurdy!

A review of “Christmas at the Renaissance Fair” from Christianity Today magazine. They didn’t care for Mannheim Steamroller, but they loved the hurdy-gurdy!


Senator Highway


Cole Younger Ford

I played mandolin on a few tracks of this CD, and the alto recorder on one track.  Cole Younger Ford (a superb name!) has a strong Southern-rock style that reminded me of a very edgy acoustic Allman Brothers sound.


Un Joyeux Noel


La Chorale de L’Alliance Francaise de Greater Phoenix, dir. Angela Morley

I am proud to have known Angela Morley.  I first met her when I worked at Borders Books in Phoenix; she was with her entourage and we talked briefly about the French baroque music I had playing in the music department.  She admired my pronunciation of “renaissance” (“re-NAY-sahnce”… very ostentatious, and tres French).

She attended some of our performances, and contacted me to play my “tambour” on this CD of French Noels that she had arranged. Her large Scottsdale house had some Golden Globes awards on display. I later found out that her name was listed on almost every Boston Pops and John Williams CD that we had.  She had composed the music for the film version of “The Little Prince,” which was nominated for an Academy Award.

She passed away in January 2009.

This is the note that Angela stuck to the CD.

This is the note that Angela stuck to the CD.

Movie soundtrack: The Blacksmith & The Carpenter (2007)


Scottsdale Community College received a generous grant from Kodak to make a short film, and this was the result. It stars Robert Picardo (the holographic doctor from Star Trek: Voyager), Liz Sheridan (Seinfeld’s mom on Seinfeld, and one-time girlfriend of James Dean, another recorder player who happened to make a few movies), Hunter Gomez (from National Treasure and Family Guy), Dr Jim Coates (with whom I have done numerous shows, and who gained national fame in a Doritos TV commercial which debuted during the 2014 Super Bowl), and Tony Curtis (from Spartacus and Some Like it Hot, among others).

The rough cut music was by Rodolfo Madero, but we were invited to supplement the soundtrack with our exotic instruments, since the action takes place in Judea about 2000 years ago. For the most part, we improvised the music in the studio, but we didn’t get composer credits. Nor did we get paid. And we had to buy our own tickets to the premiere. But we did get to be in a movie with some internationally-known talent, and that’s what counts.

Published on March 12, 2014 at 9:21 pm  Leave a Comment  

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