Live music adds a huge amount of atmosphere to a game. Not only that, it can be used as a device to inject information for both plot and immersion purposes, and finally, music and storytelling provides a way to immortalise characters and to increase their lasting impact on the game world. The purpose of this section of the wiki is to encourage live performances of appropriate music and stories and to provide guidance and resources to create a different style of music for each nation. No IC music is discouraged, these resources are just suggestions. We hope it will help musicians and performers to bring alive their camps and add a great deal to the immersion of the game as a whole.
Music is supported by a great many talented and skilled PC bards as well by the NPC bards who are members of the Three Refrains.
Please note, we are being very careful to credit all tunes and lyrics here. Please do not upload copyrighted material without the explicit permission of the authors/performers. Want to submit music to this resource? Here is a music template page to help you.
Songs popular throughout the Empire
Imperial Battle Songs
- A Battle Anthem - known across the Empire and popular in martial nations such as Highguard, The Marches, Dawn and Varushka, though sung in different styles, easy.
- Always a Hero Comes Home - Song about what it means to be a hero, easy.
Songs about The Way
- The Faculty Song - Song about staff of The Academy and also teaches virtues, easy.
- Useful Rhymes - rhymes to help children (and adults) remember Virtues, herbs, etc.
- Here's A Health to the Company - easy drinking song.
- The Parting Glass - farewell song, medium.
- Daddy Fox - folk song about a cunning fox, easy.
- Three Ravens/Twa Corbies - song about a dead knight, medium.
- His Banner's Not Mine Versatile love song
Music of the Empire nations
Generic folk is sung throughout the Empire and no music is 'wrong' to sing or play unless it has OOC references. However it would be great to hear a different sound in each camp and the pages for each nation (below) will help you to adapt your existing repertoire to a national style, and learn new material.
- The Brass Coast music
- Dawn music
- Highguard music
- League music
- The Marches music
- Navarr music
- Urizen music
- Varushka music
- Wintermark music
- Imperial Orc music
Music in battle
Most of the Imperial nations will use music or noise to inspire courage on the battlefield, or to terrify their enemies. Styles vary from nation to nation and group to group, however here are some overall tendencies:
- Brass Coast - favour wild shouting and shrieking, along with taunts and challenges or structured 'marching music' on pipes/recorders with light drumming. They build up courage by typically starting in a very slow beat that gets faster and faster until it dissolves into chaos, then starting again.
- Dawn - a Dawnish shield wall may be accompanied by formal fanfare, or pipe and drum. Individual units are often accompanied by a troubadour, who maintains the morale of the soldiers through story and song, and who is also responsible for immortalising their deeds at the battle's end.
- Highguard - Highguard has a tradition of battle choirs, or unstructured bugles/trumpets/horns at the charge. When marching Highguard soldiers either sing or follow a rhythmical bell rung by a priest. Some units tie tiny bells to their shields or armour which ring during the fighting and if they fall in battle, the priests collect the bells and add them to the group's standard.
- The League - League soldiers love to taunt their enemies and often chant simple rhyming jeers at opposing soldiers. The League also make use of high or snare drums to build morale before a battle.
- The Marches - in a similar fashion to Rough Music, Marchers will shout, chant, bang shields, staves or anything else to create noise before a battle. When marching to the battlefield, drinking songs may also help to keep spirits up!
- Navarr - in order to distract foes from potential flanking ambushes, the Navarr may shout and chant, and use small horns and drums to create unstructured noise. At night or in dim forests, bullroarers or 'twirlies'/'whirlers' are sometimes used to scare and disorient their enemies.
- Urizen - gongs, bells and drums are sometimes used to provide a steady repeating rhythm which keeps the group of Sentinels moving forwards, gongs are also used to signal to other nations when Urizen reinforcements are close at hand.
- Varushka - Varushkans often sing morale-boosting Marching songs, and can be accompanied on the battlefield by drums but typically forget about any kind of structured music once the fighting starts.
- Wintermark - A Wintermark battle line will have orators, drummers, singers, or pipers gathered around the Banner of each group and they play a large role in keeping morale up. See Wintermark Military Concerns for more detail.
- Orcs - big drums, chanting, horns
Songs about notable people or entities known across the Empire
- Britta's song - Song about Empress Britta
- Harvest Time - Song about Empress Britta
- The Lion and the Unicorn - Song about Jaheris and Eleonaris becoming well known, especially by those associated with the Summer Realm
- Riqueza's Dream Telling one version of the tale of the founding of the Brass Coast this song is popular in taverns and Alcazars. It has sparked off several diplomatic incidents by 'accidentally' offending Highborn visitors.
General music resources
- For song lyrics: Mudcat, traditionalmusic.co.uk
- For tunes: TheSession
- To find vaguely religious lyrics about the virtues, try using the word search at http://fasola.org/indexes/1991/?l=a You can search by words e.g. Ambition or "The Way" and then click through to the whole song. To find the tune, try googling the song title as many shape note songs are on youtube, or find a friendly shape note singer who can look up the tune in the book. See also http://www.shapenote.net/ - a great resource for learning shapenote music.
- Shakespeare sonnets are suitable for a few cultures, especially Dawn, or for filking. http://www.shakespeares-sonnets.com/all.php
- A great podcast for discovering new folk music: http://www.folkcast.co.uk/