Walter Frye

(? -before June 1475)

Fifteenth century English composer who belonged to the Guild of St Nicholas in London from 1457. A number of his songs and the motet Ave regina caelorum became very popular in Northern Europe in the late 15th century, single lines from them providing cantus firmifor works by Josquin, Obrecht and Tinctoris. The motet itself was clearly depicted in three Continental pictures of the time. Three cantus firmus masses survive; in them Frye uses head motives (motto themes appearing at the beginning of each movement), with little imitative writing.

A Partial Walter Frye Discography   |  IIIC: John Dunstable and his Circle