13th century medieval siege in France. From the Maciejowski Bible c.1240 CE.(Pierpont Morgan Library).
So there is a secret behind music. It is why music transcends language and cultural barriers. This secret is a revelation, so pure and simple. Fortunately my vocalist Ravensea, who happens to also be a Clinical Music Therapist, was the Muse that shared this secret with me and I will now share with you. But first let me set this up. We wouldn’t want to rush, that’s the cardinal rule of all drummers, don’t rush!
So Mankind has been playing music since our beginnings, when our earliest ancestors were banging on hollow logs with Sticks and Stones. The oldest know song “Hurian hymn no. 6,” was written in cuneiform dating back to 3400B.C. in Syria. However, it is the early music of the European classical tradition, Gregorian Chant and Scared Choral music that immediately cuts straight to my core and opens up the flood gates of my imagination…
Upon hearing these Sacred Choral styles, I immediately get visions of Ancient lore, the questing knight, the sword Excalibur, and sprawling dark castles. Back in my RPG video game days, I would turn down the game volume and create my own gaming sound track that would be exclusively Sacred Choral and period music, because I wanted to be immersed in that experience. I have since found that the more recent styles of Metal and Gothic music, serve as good conduits for the imagination. My Table top Gaming group (AD&D, Tainted Grail, MTG) are fans of Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, The Sword and Ghost in particular, in large part due to the imagery they portray. What’s your go-to soundtrack for your favorite hobby or pastime?
So let’s talk about Medieval War and how that fits into this narrative. I’ve hear of LARPing and Hollywood movies certainly portray it as comical and I’ve heard of Renaissance Fairs. But never heard the term ‘Pennsic War’. Here’s proof and point, how the Universe will answer your call through coincidences. While posting on Facebook looking for Armor to use for our First Music Video, I discovered the Pennsic War community. Pennsic War consists of a large subculture of Medieval enthusiasts (The SCA), that glorify the lifestyle of the Middle ages up until the 1600’s. They hold weekly meetings, events, classes and live heavy armored combat! I thought rolling D20’s was as good as it gets. So now I’m currently taking Rapier fighting lessons with the local Pennsic SCA group, ‘The Barony of the Cleftlands.’ In fact, the lead role in our Music Video ‘Modal Consequence’, The Knight “Levi”, is in fact a member of the local Pennsic Barony.
Now finally to get to the secret of music I promised, thanks to my singer Ravensea’s insight. So why does music resonate so much with Humans, in every Culture, across time? There’s actually a term to describe when music makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up, it’s called ‘Frission’. Music can evoke such amazing feelings, and that’s exactly it! In other-words, the secret of music and why music influences us and transcends language and cultural barriers, is that “Music is an integral part of our emotional lives.”
Please share some input, stories or inspiration about music or your favorite pastimes below…Thank you and Quest forth with honor!
If you like the Medieval era, or just really like imagination evoking music, you might consider checking out “Lore.” an album based on the Hero’s Journey. Modern music created with honoring those who seek forgotten times and past ages.