"Apollo's Lyre" (Composition in the Ancient Greek Hypophrygian Mode)





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Uploaded on Apr 11, 2010

A clip of the 1st track of my album, "Apollo's Lyre". This piece is an original composition for replica Kithara-style lyre, in the Ancient Greek Hypophrygian Mode...

According to ancient Greek tradition, Apollo was the god of music, and above all, a master of the lyre.

The concept of this album is to restore the sound once more, the Lyres of Apollo both the large wooden lyre, known in ancient Greece as the Kithara, once favoured by the professional musicians of ancient Greece, and the skin-membrane lyre, known in ancient Greece as the Lyra - the lyre made from a tortoise shell resonator, over which was stretched a soundboard of taut leather.


The names of musical modes in use today, (e.g. Dorian, Mixolydian etc) although having the same names as the original Greek musical modes, were actually misnamed during the Middle Ages! Apparently, the Greeks counted intervals from top to bottom. When medieval ecclesiastical scholars tried to interpret the ancient texts, they counted from bottom to top, jumbling the information. The misnamed medieval modes are only distinguished by the ancient Greek modes of the same name, by being labelled Church Modes. It was due to a misinterpretation of the Latin texts of Boethius, that medieval modes were given the wrong Greek names!

According to an article on Greece in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and
Musicians, the original ancient Greek names for species of the octave included the following (on white keys):

B-B: Mixolydian
E-E: Dorian
A-A: Hypodorian
D-D: Phrygian
G-G: Hypophrygian
C-C: Lydian
F-F: Hypolydian

For what Plato & Aristotle themselves had this to say about these ancient musical modes, please see this fascinating link:



The repertoire in this unique album consists of a selection of original compositions based on actual scales heard thoughout the ancient world. The album features some of the Ancient Greek modes mentioned by Plato & Aristotle, improvisations on an mystical Middle Eastern scale, Ancient Hebrew scales and an Ancient Egyptian scale...

My Albums of Ancient Lyre Music are available, anywhere in the world, from iTunes:


They are also available from Amazon MP3 Store:


Also, my 3 CD albums, "King David's Lyre; Echoes of Ancient Israel", "An Ancient Lyre" & "Lyre of the Levites" are available anywhere in the world from CD Baby:


For full details, and all the historical research behind my myriad of "Musical Adventures in Time Travel", please visit my official website:


Many thanks for watching!

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