minstrel: Pennsic Bardic vs Drumming Circles

Kathy Lee kal35810 at Jetson.UH.EDU
Fri Jul 25 14:51:44 PDT 1997

>I'm not interested in drum circles
>either (those are very easy to find at the War).

Efen -

I'm generally not interested in drum circles either, but a few years ago a
certain Lady Vashti introduced me to some Middle Eastern vocals.  It's a
very free form style with lots of 1/4 tones, and most people have never
heard anything like it before.  Throw in a couple of flutes, whatever
instruments you have available, and you've got some beautiful music.

The more talented dancers usually appreciate the change of pace, and the
bards get to make nice with the drummers.  (Notice - I said drummers, not
drunks.)  I don't know about in other kingdoms, but in Ansteorra, all too
often the bardic circles are driven off by doumbeks.  It's hard to compete
with that kind of volume, unless you want a "closed camp."  So, rather than
trying to compete, I join in with something appropriate.  Then, when the
dancers get tired, I steer the circle back to the bardic.  When the bards
want a break, the dancers are ready to come back in for 15 or 30 minutes.

Granted, this is not how I would choose to set up every (or even most)
bardic circles, but it beats getting into a "king of the hill" battle with
the drummers, and it can also be a rather fun way to spend an evening.  I'm
not into the cabaret style of belly dancing, but there are several very
talented individuals whom I enjoy watching dance.  If I can help them out
with some period music instead of just the drums we get all too much of, why

- My two cents -


ps - now I'm going to be a hypocrite.  The Ansteorran Knowne World / MSoB
bardic circle on Monday night at the war will be doumbek free.  There will
be plenty of time for drum circles in the Ansteorran camp throughout the war
week, especially I imagine at the Wednesday night chili party.  (Their
Majesties Ansteorra are particularly fond of anyting Scottish, if you're
trying to find something to perform.  Largess is a strong possibility, as
are full mugs)

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