1564 - January 21, 1628
born in Regensburg, Germany, composed during the Renaissance period
Aside from producing exceptionally well-written, practical works, Gregor Aichinger stood out among the German musicians of his time for his early use of the "basso continuo" in his compositions and their titles (Divinae siasticae c*m basso generali et continuo, for example). Little is known about his early years, but records indicate that he enrolled in the University of Ingolstadt in 1578, then accepted an appointment as the established organist to Jakob Fugger in 1584, which he kept until his death in 1628. He also studied with Giovanni Gabrieli in Venice, beginning in the mid- to late 1580s, at the University of Siena (1586), again at the University of Ingolstadt (1588), and at the University of Perugia (1599). Influenced by Heinrich von Knöringen, Aichinger made a decision to enter the priesthood and was simultaneously granted the positions of choir vicar and clergyman at San Maria Magdalena sometime between 1600 - 1603, and the latter post at the college of St. Gertraud in Augsburg shortly there after.
Aichinger composed during his student days, and also during his career as a priest; he even wrote spiritual contemplations toward the end of his career -- for example, Thymiama sacerdotale (1618). Primarily written with an airy quality and graceful rhythms, for groups of five voices or less, his compositions are a combination of both the Italian and German manners in their application of traditional technique and their experimentation with concerto style. It was in works written in 1607 and onward that the continuo part is found, and with frequency; these titles include Enconmium verbo incarnato (1617), Quercus dodonaea (1619), Corolla eucharistica (1621), and Flores musici ad mendam SS convivii (1626). Most of his works, such as Sacrae cantiones (1590), Odaria lectissima (1600), Vulnera Christi, a D. Bernardo salutata (1606), Vespertinum virginis canticum sive Magnificat (1603) and Virginalia: laudes aeternae Virginis Mariae (1607), however, do not contain this innovation. His works are not readily available on recordings. ~ Meredith Gailey, Rovi