Fantasy Novel

Fantasy Novel
Read a fantasy novel written by me and my brother!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

A Whole New World

Fantasy World Instrumentation

This is probably one of my stranger posts, but then again, I haven't posted in awhile so I'm making up for lost time. My main reason for posting this is I haven't seen anything like this on the Internet and I think it's important enough that it needs to be covered. Besides, I also like composing fantasy music, so I thought it'd help me as well.

Anyway, in this post I will be discussing what types of instruments to use when making fantasy music for dwarves and elves, borrowing from the soundtrack of the Lord of the Rings, the Hobbit and my own music.

1. Dwarves

Dwarves are a strong hardy people who dig tunnels, mine caves and dwell in mountains. This should be reflected in the instruments chosen.

[Horns] A safe choice with dwarves is horn instruments like trombones, trumpets, french horns, and other types like this. The low horns especially can make your music sound dwarvish. For an example of this, listen to this wonderful music from the Hobbit soundtrack called Over Hill

[Drums] Loud bass drums and anvil hits are excellent instruments to use for dwarf music. Make full use of them. For an example of the anvils, listen to Song of the Lonely Mountain from the Hobbit. The anvil hit comes in at 1:10. See if you can hear it.

[Strings] Beautiful strings are another wonderful instrument to use. Though the strings might not actually take over the whole melody, they are great to use for the chords and for a supporting melody. Listen to my composition called Dwarf Prince for an example of dwarf music that does have strings in the melody line. The strings supporting melody line comes in at 0:33 and takes over as the main melody line at 1:05. The strings don't stay in the melody line the rest of the piece, though.

[Choirs] Male choirs and voices are also great for dwarf music. Listen to Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold from the Hobbit for an example of this.

There are definitely other instruments which can be used in dwarf pieces, like the harp which is featured in Dwarf Prince, but these are the main ones. I hope you feel more inspired to try your hand at making dwarf music now.

2. Elves

Elves are an intelligent, nimble people who live peacefully in their forest homes (providing nothing disturbs them that is). The instruments for them are dramatically different than the ones for dwarves.

[Choirs] Female choirs are a wonderful choice for elven music and give it a beautiful, ethereal atmosphere. For two examples, listen to the Lothlorien Theme and The Passing of the Elves from Lord of the Rings.

[Strings] Rich, full-sounding strings are common in elven music. Unlike dwarf music, strings more often take over the melody line.
[Harps] Beautiful, gentle, and flowing, the harp is an amazing instrument to use for elves. Listen to my elven piece called Secret of the Elves and Rivendell from Lord of the Rings as examples of this.

[Flutes] Flutes can also be used in elven music and give it a beautiful, heart-wrenching sound. Listen to my piece called Elven Lands for an example of this. The flute comes in at 0:37.
[Horns] Though not as common as the other instrument choices, trumpets, french horns, and other higher-sounding horns can be used for elves. Horns are especially useful to use for elf battle music or other music involving elves in war and give the music a more majestic and regal sound. Listen to The Elves Arrive at Helm's Deep and see if you can hear the horn, noting how its inclusion makes the music much richer and more fit for a battle.

These are the important instruments to use for elven music and I hope they will inspire you to create your own elven tune.

I know this didn't cover nearly all of the fantasy creatures, but this is enough for this post. Anyway, thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. Fine post about music and really helpful info for
    musicians .Please write write more about musicians wanted .I wanna read more similar post from yours .Please keep writing for music.