Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A "Musical" Appendix N

Like James over at Grognardia, the death of metal vocalist Ronnie James Dio has reminded me of all the friends that I had who were metal heads that I also role-played with. I never much got into their music, but (due to their their enthusiastic willingness to share) metal became an integral part of our RPG "soundtrack". In fact, when I contemplate the music we listened to during and around my early role-playing days, I am amazed by how eclectic it is. Beyond a common culture (as James calls it), my role-playing expanded my own cultural experience. Each one of my friends brought something unique to the table and we all learned to appreciate (if not love) all of it. Prog rock, punk, new age, classical, electronic as well as metal all meshed to create an inspirational backdrop for our game-sessions.

Believe it or not, this is what Christianity has done with each of the cultures that it has encountered throughout the ages. It allowed each culture to find its own unique way to express the fundamental Christian truth of Jesus Christ crucified and risen. What we know today as Christian Tradition is an amalgam of different cultural expressions throughout the ages. In a way, this is also what I have found (and love) in the OSR — a willingness to accept a huge variety of influences and interests that affect and enhance our beloved hobby. Its not just a shared culture, but an expansion of it.

To that end, I'd like to offer a short list of music that throughout the years have inspired my role playing — especially my early years. I don't necessarily own (or ever owned) all of these, but they do represent music that immediately comes to my mind when I think of RPGs. Thus, I give you my "musical" Appendix N:

  • Wagner — Ride of the Valkyries
  • Beethoven — Fifth Symphony, movements 3 & 4
  • Jethro Tull — Songs from the Wood (album), Broadsword, Cold Wind to Valhalla, Thick as a Brick (album)
  • Pink Floyd — Wish You Were Here (album)
  • Kansas — Point of No Return (album)
  • Yello — Stella (album)
  • Clash — Combat Rock (album)
  • Queen — The Prophet's Song, Flash Gordon (album), The Works (album), A Kind of Magic (album)
  • Thomas Dolby — Blinded by Science (album), The Flat Earth (album)
  • Megadeath — Peace Sells...But Who's Buying (album)
  • Art of Noise — (Who's Afraid of) the Art of Noise? (album)
  • Alan Parsons Project
  • Patrick O'Hearn
  • Gregorian Chant
  • Byzatine Chant


JB said...

Now THAT is eclectic!
: )

Talysman said...

Isn't that first Thomas Dolby album The Golden Age of Wireless?

FrDave said...

Talysman —

Actually both. According to my memory, I first encountered Dolby via the 12" EP release with singles from The Golden Age of Wireless titled Blinded by Science. Since it had several songs on it I labeled it as "album."