brettwi at ix.netcom.com
Mon Sep 4 15:02:24 PDT 1995
Greetings and well met!
I am Ciorstan MacAmhlaidh, a Scotswoman of the reign of the young James
VI. I, too, do not consider myself a bard as the term isn't in use in
the land I am from-- though widely in use in the land in which I live,
Persona aside, it has bothered me for some time that the use of the
word 'bard' has been coopted for SCA use for a trait I find disturbing
in the more mundane filking groups. Specifically, a number of those
who filk within the science fiction/fantasy crowd loudly proclaim
themselves as filkers, proud to sing off-key and badly.
All in all, that's fine and good-- but on contact off and on for the
last fifteen years or so it *has* distressed me that the majority of
these folk are still at the same level of performance skills. They're
static in that I can reasonably expect to walk into a room where a filk
is going on within the next five years and hear the same folk singing
or playing at the same level of expertise/confidence they exhibited
five or even ten years ago. The word 'filker' in this instance has
been conveniently used as a shield to hide behind, and a refusal to
improve on a gift or skill.
Which strikes me as a colossal waste of an individual's precious time.
Why engage in an activity one loves and enjoys and yet refuse to take
advantage of the learning of skills such participation engenders? I am
tired of hearing songs constistently introduced by Society musicians
and performers with an apology for something or other...it's needless
self-deprecation and for the most part, false modesty.
I have been seeing some of this same process happening in the Society
as well, with the substitution of the word 'bard' for 'filker'. Either
word used, I believe it's something to be avoided.
ciorstan macAmhlaidh, CHA, AoA
More information about the minstrel