Franco-Flemish composer. A singer in the Sforza family chapel in Milan in 1474-5, and a court chapel singer in Paris in 1486; a prebendary at Cambrai in 1498 and at Douai in 1500; at his death he was a canon at S. Quentin.
Compère's extant outputs consists of two Masses and four Mass sections, three motet cycles, twenty-three motets and Magnificats, five motet-chansons, forty-nine chansons and two frottolas. He was regarded as one of the most prominent of the contemporaries of Josquin Desprez. His Missa Allez regrets, based on Hayne van Ghizeghem's chanson, is a notable forerunner of the sixteenth century parody Mass. The motet cycles are in fact designed to be substituted for the correct liturgical items (both Ordinary and Proper) of Masses for certain feasts--hence the label 'substitution Mass' sometimes given them; this custom was unique to the Ambrosian use of Milan. Compère's motet-chansons have a tenor with Latin text glossed by the French words of the upper voices, as in the exquisite Royne du ciel/Regina caeli. His secular works document the change from sentimental Burgundian chansons in the fixed poetic forms towards the witty chansons of later French composers. Several were printed in Petrucci's Odhecaton.