Josh Drake

Dr. Joshua F. Drake
Born Tennessee
Occupation Musicologist, hymnist, academic

Dr. Joshua F. Drake is a musicologist and hymnist at Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania.[1] His research, writing and presentations primarily analyze the structure of 15th century Latin Christian motets, which are a category of choral musical compositions. Drake is notable for his research and papers that challenge commonly held views regarding the relationship between words and music in motets of the late 15th century, as well as his discoveries related to the origins of the Buonaparte family.[2] He also serves on the editorial advisory board for "The Quad" Magazine.[3]

While the earliest motets originated during the 13th century, the relationship between words and music in the 15th century is particularly significant in the study of music because it coincides with the Protestant Reformation, which completely reordered Western society and had a profound influence on the evolution of music.


Discoveries related to the Buonaparte family

The original arms of the Buonapartes

Drake's research into Ms. Magl.XIX 164–7 located at the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Firenze uncovered previously unidentified emblems in the bassus partbook. Drake's further investigations led him to suggest that the emblems should be associated with the Buonaparte family and, perhaps, with Pope Clement VII's friend and advisor Jacopo Buonaparte who witnessed and wrote an important account of the sack of Rome (1527).

Drake makes this association because of the emblems' similarity to the Buonaparte coat of arms.

The partbooks he analyzed consist of 49 Italian, 24 French secular and 13 Latin sacred musical compositions from early composers such as Josquin, Heinrich Isaac, Sebastiano Festa and Bernardo Pisano and have been essential in reconstructing the life of Pisano.

Drake also suggests that the association with the Buonaparte family helps to explain the geographical disputes that exist due to the partbooks having a Roman binding yet a Florentine script and Florentine paper. He makes this further assertion in part because the Buonaparte family was Florentine but Jacopo Buonaparte spent a great deal of time in Rome, in addition to the coat of arms in the partbooks being so similar to those of the Buonapart family.[2]

Selected works

Books and media

Recovering Music Education as a Christian Liberal Art, (BorderStone Press, LLC) (2010).

Selected conferences

Selected hymns and music


  • As in the Days of Haggai When
  • Behold, What Light Rolls Back the Sky?
  • Eternal God, Mover Unmoved
  • Holy Word of God, The
  • O Christian Home
  • Spirit Binds Us to Our Lord, The


  • Flandrensis
  • Forest Glen
  • Français
  • Honoro Patris
  • Lex Noster
  • Schultz

Public availability of works here[14][15]


External links

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