Culture of Music

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Dormichign64's picture
Dormichign64
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The art of song is an ancient tradition across Tamriel and differs drastically in every region and culture. There are also inferences of orchestral music without words, likely in places like Cyrodil. However, we don't know much about music in any parts of Tamriel perhaps except Skyrim. Let us discuss the music of Morrowind as I am sure it would be very interesting. We know that there are bards in Morrowind, but not what songs they sing. We know what instruments are used in Morrowind such as bells, drums, and the lute which looks very different to the common imperial lute. There would be imperial influence in the music, but traditional sounds would be common. What would this sound like to a non-native? I've always wondered about this and would love to get some ideas down for possible world building.

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Kevaar
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Old post, but I always thought Dres should have working chanteys, like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TISp0swKhkk

Meanwhile, Ashlanders would be haunting, some percussion instruments:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9wLsy9d63U

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azeis
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Generally, I feel religious music and hymns would be the most present in terms of music in government and officialized settings. As for bards and such, I would assume a very natively influenced sound. We can make some inferences by the type of instruments the natives seem to have and comparing that to real life to get an estimate on that sound. They seem to really like percussive and woodwind instruments, and have a tendency to use drums and wooden windchimes a lot, excessively on the drums. All this together with the designs of the instruments, as well as other similarities between native Dunmer and IRL, is giving a very middle-eastern/ Southern Asian direction. Generally this points the sound to being something of a mix between old Hebrew music and traditional Indian music, so it would not surprise me at all if the Dunmer had something akin to a Sitar in their instrument range (I'd love it if we got to make up some fictional instruments for the region in good ol' Dwarf Fortress fashion). As for music from outside of morrowind, as it is being colonized by the empire, I think it is safe to assume it is very much akin to ancient mediterranian in influence, so I feel they'd have harps and flutes with that mediterranian flare in playing. As for the songs, probably epics, poems, and folk songs alongside hymns and chants. The Ashlanders I feel would especially be fans of spiritual chants and epics.

Ol’ Aze
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Dormichign64
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I also had the idea of throat singing as a dunmer tradition judging by their culture and their voice. The instruments could be reminiscent of the flora/fauna of the land like the hoom or some kind of noisy plant. Perhaps a horn-like fungus?

Another thing to consider is that music in the Elder Scrolls is associated somewhat with Sheogorath. If any, what kinds of things would the dunmer consider bad with this in mind?

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azeis
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chitin drums is something I think would be extremely likely for the culture. Cultures like the Dunmer IRL, in my experience, LOVE drums and percussive instruments alongside some stringed ones, and tend to also like throat singing. One culture that is particularly similar would also be the Mongols in the age of the great Khans. Here is an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1rmo3fKeveo

Now as for the religious views of music, I think it wouldn't effect it too much outside of their preference of beat. More settled, high class types more in line with the temples would like probably more ordered and steady music akin to your standard hymns, while lesser folk would like more active sounds, these sounds however would still be leapyears more steady and calm in nature than, say, rock and metal; the sounds one associates with those genres in terms of beat would be more in the very uncivilized areas, such as the tribes and outer reaches (one must remember that Blues, the grandaddy of all rock, got it from slaves who had been imported from tribal areas and the like in Africa, which would then pass on to further generations and change to be more "american" as one would say, until it became the Blues we all know and love.)

Ol’ Aze
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Kevaar
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This image always made me wonder if music at one point was supposed to be forbidden in the Tribunal religion, madness related to Dagoth Ur:

Considering also this excerpt from the 36 Sermons:
I AM THE SHARMAT
I AM OLDER THAN MUSIC
WHAT I BRING IS LIGHT
WHAT I BRING IS A STAR
WHAT I BRING IS
AN ANCIENT SEA
WHEN YOU SLEEP YOU SEE ME
DANCING AT THE CORE
IT IS NOT A BLIGHT
IT IS MY HOUSE
I PUT A STAR
INTO THE WORLD'S MOUTH
TO MURDER IT
TEAR DOWN THE PYLONS
MY BLIND FISH
SWIM IN THE NEW
PHLOGISTON
TEAR DOWN THE PYLONS
MY DEAF MOONS
SING AND BURN
AND ORBIT ME
I AM OLDER THAN MUSIC
WHAT I BRING IS LIGHT
WHAT I BRING IS A STAR
WHAT I BRING IS
AN ANCIENT SEA

However, being that lutes and windchimes are a thing in the game...maybe it's singing in particular? I'm picturing Dunmer being VERY good at heavy death metal...and seems like the themes in that kind of music would also fit into their culture pretty well, lol.

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In real life music is attributed to being an invention (if you will, though more like an infulencer) of the devil; of Lucifer, or of Beelzebub; and I always liked that the 'life-cycle' of a dreamer is to eventually metamorphasize into an Ascended Sleeper who can play music to loft notes of influence through the lucid time-sleeve and into the dreams of mortals to try and convince them to follow the order and the will of Lord Dagoth Ur. Also note that Corprus is the affliction that begins the eventual turn. In my mind, the theory is that there are 2 paths of Corprus.

1. Get Corprus; and from there either

1.1 Turn into a Corprus Stalker and then eventualy a Corprus Beast (man I wish we had 1 or 2 other stages of Corprus to fight in the game, or to add to TR)

1.2 Turn into a Dreamer.

You see the ones who become 1.1 are "lost". Roamers. They lost their purpose, their Divine Disease was a wasted opportunity, and without the sharp scalpel of 'music' and 'litanies of love' they cannot be carved and become disfigured and insane. The ones who become 1.2 are then eventually on their path to becoming remade anew, a PHLOGISTON catalyst to spark their new form, if that makes any sense.

EDIT: Also note that in the Corprusarium it is explicitly stated that drumming calms the Corprus beasts. Perhaps resonence of their 'could-have-been' transformation makes them placid?

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For some reason, I've always imagined Indoril music being similar to the music of West Java (Gamelan degung) with the use of the gamelan and flutes and whatnot. 

Gamelan Degung - Sabi Lulungan