A couple of years ago in Vienna I visited the house where Franz Schubert died. The modest apartment, the small bed where he was nursed by his brother and Franz’ tiny glasses, lovingly displayed in a show case - It was an overwhelming experience. Not long afterwards fortepianist Bart van Oort suggested we record some Schubert songs together. I went back and forth over this for two years. After all, the greatest Lied singers had already rendered, recorded, and tutored this repertoire much better than I could ever hope to do. And yet... with a little help from my friends, this CD came to be. Friendship can work wondrous things, as Schubert knew perhaps more than anyone else. His life was no bed of roses, but he could always call upon his friends. They organized the Schubertiaden, recognized his genius, and did all they could to advocate his work. And whenever Franz was hard up, they provided him with money or shelter. Friendship is also a tangible source of inspiration for this CD. After concerts with Bart van Oort and Remy van Kesteren, I approached other friends and relations, people I knew from joint concerts or meaningful conversations. Together with them, I opted for the use of various instruments in performing the songs on this CD. I wanted to move beyond the constraints of the soundscape familiar to the composer, who availed himself of a fortepiano and drew in the ‘modern’ grand piano, as well as other instruments that cast a different light on Schubert’s Lieder.