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RE: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

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  • Mark Cipra
    Well, OK, now there s a list of topics for future sessions! I m sure some of them will get taken up right here. But I do want to respond to two items. First,
    Message 1 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011

      Well, OK, now there's a list of topics for future sessions! I'm sure some of them will get taken up right here. But I do want to respond to two items.

       

      First, I'm in almost exactly the same boat as you. Hideously ancient (over 50; "I've got ten years on the Pope!"), just started in the SCA a few years ago, and the SCA was my first extended opportunity at musical performance. I was once told to "just mouth the words" in a musical theater production. (If it's any help on that score, the first person I ever heard make the same confession was Mary Travers, of Peter, Paul and Mary. She seems to have done all right in spite of it.) I still don't sing other people's material (including true period pieces), because my voice isn't good enough for that, but it's good enough to carry my own stuff. This is a wonderful thing about the SCA - you're taken at your own level, applauded for the effort, and encouraged to become better.

       

      Second, about competitions and awards. I come from an area (Oaken, in the Middle Kingdom) where the bardic arts are not highly regarded or understood. I may be mistaken, but I believe the FIRST bardic arts Laurel in my local region is being elevated this coming September (yay, Zsof!), although there are others elsewhere in the Midrealm; there are no Kingdom-level awards specific to the bardic arts in the Midrealm (a good thing, some would say); and it's fairly frequent that the sitting Royals never get around to naming a Kingdom Bard. You, at least, live in a Kingdom where the bardic arts are celebrated and revered, so treasure that.

       

      I do think that bards are a lot less interested in competition, per se. After all, in every formal combat situation, there's a winner and a loser, and it's natural to recognize that with trophies and awards; but competition is certainly not inherent in the bardic arts. Many bards in my area prefer not to engage in competitions at all. I've found that there's much more interest in building community, mutual support, etc. - as evidenced by a couple (or all) of the sessions from this year's Collegium.

       

      But there's room for a mix. Around here, we've been trying to ensure there's some formal bardic activity at every event (as well as encouraging informal bardic activity), and we try to mix it up. More often than not, it's non-competitive (a bardic circle or equivalent, feast entertainment), but we also have competitions. Some people respond to that challenge in a way they don't to non-competitive ones. The lesson here, I think, is that if you want something to happen, you may have to do it yourself.

       

      My recommendation to you: Connect with a senior bard to be your mentor. You should overcome your reticence about approaching a Laurel for help. I've never met a bardic arts Laurel who wasn't open and friendly about encouraging youngsters like us*. My experience is that, *without exception*, Laurels and other senior bards are welcoming and encouraging, and most are wise enough to take you as you come and willing to help you develop in a way appropriate to your talents and interests.

       

      *  And truly, very few Laurels in other disciplines are snooty; OK, a few of them are unbearable, but not really all that many.

       

      Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

      __

      "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

       

       

      From: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Kate Braithwaite
      Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2011 8:03 PM
      To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

       

       

      Thank you for your kindness, I will say that I am new to the whole bardic 'thing'.  I wrote my first real song (not talking about the ditties I remember humming under my embarrassed breath when I was a child) only a little over two years ago, and became hooked.  I am an old woman (over 50) but so very young to the culture, including the SCA (only 3 1/2 years in Canada, 1 year in the US).  I really know so little about anything, and would love to be able to learn all I can:

       

      Where do you get ideas?

      How do you decide what kind of music to write?

      How do others write music?

      How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on (say) a bodhran?

      How do you step up to perform?

      How do you get a circle going?

      Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?

      How do you write support music?

      Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?

      How do I make my words fit the music better?

      How do I make my music fit the words better?

      How do I make my song more period?

      How can I get information together for writing songs about people and events?

      What is a bard, really?

      What is an apprentice?

      Why is an apprentice?

      How does one become an apprentice?

      What is involved in being an apprentice?

      What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a Laurel?

      How does one become a Laurel?

      How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?

      OK - I'll stop now but there are so many more things I want to know!!! *sigh* Any (all) of the above are of interest to me.  However, I have noted two things in the kingdoms I have played with.  The first is that people just seem to expect that old folks like me will just be able to launch out and do the things that interest them - when the truth, for many of us, is that the older we are, the more time we have had to accept our lack of talent, or have our 'failings' ground deeply into the soul - whereas the young may feel it more strongly, they also have more ability to push past their lack of self esteem in the performance arena.  Personally, for 50 years, I was told my voice was more painful to hear than nails on a chalkboard.  Every time I open my mouth to sing, I still hear my mother telling me to stop, please don't sing, "leave a bit of hope in the world that music can be enjoyable".  I am now told by some in the SCA, that my music doesn't, after all, make their ears bleed - and so I keep on because I want to be good, it's fun to write the songs, and I have hope.  Anyway - I'm pretty sure that I am not alone, and that those others who start the bardic trail at a more advanced age need as much education as the young ones - age does not always bring automatic knowledge.

       

      The other thing that I have discovered, less in Ealdormere than in my previous kingdom, is that the bardic arts seem to have a place around the fires but when it comes to accomplishments/accolades, fighting is what people notice, and that's about all they notice.  There are almost no bardic competitions - and the few that there are, are not very well recognized/publicized, but there are fighting competitions and awards at almost every event.  Even when there are bardic competitions, the winners are recognized at the event, and that is it.  Fighting awards make it to the kingdom web page, they wear their awards and are well recognized.  Surely the arts, and those who practice them deserve a bit more recognition/acceptance?

       

      One thing I can help with, is teaching you how to put the little black marks on the paper (notes) so that you can share your music with others - at least the basic stuff.

       

      'Nuff

      Widow Kate, Lady of the Lake 

       

      P.S. Help me Bardic Collegium - you are my last hope! (grin)

    • Kate Braithwaite
      Wow!  What a wonderfully supportive response.  Gotta say, I really hope we meet some day.  In the meantime, any suggestions about overcoming the painful
      Message 2 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
        Wow!  What a wonderfully supportive response.  Gotta say, I really hope we meet some day.  In the meantime, any suggestions about overcoming the painful shyness and feelings of total inadequacy that engulf me every time I approach a laurel?  Stupid thing is, I irregularly speak with three of them, and they are remarkably approachable - it's just that I have so many years of being a waste of time and space that the nagging feeling persists.
        Thank you
        Widow Kate


        From: Mark Cipra <cipram@...>
        To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Wed, August 17, 2011 6:56:54 AM
        Subject: RE: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

         

        Well, OK, now there's a list of topics for future sessions! I'm sure some of them will get taken up right here. But I do want to respond to two items.

         

        First, I'm in almost exactly the same boat as you. Hideously ancient (over 50; "I've got ten years on the Pope!"), just started in the SCA a few years ago, and the SCA was my first extended opportunity at musical performance. I was once told to "just mouth the words" in a musical theater production. (If it's any help on that score, the first person I ever heard make the same confession was Mary Travers, of Peter, Paul and Mary. She seems to have done all right in spite of it.) I still don't sing other people's material (including true period pieces), because my voice isn't good enough for that, but it's good enough to carry my own stuff. This is a wonderful thing about the SCA - you're taken at your own level, applauded for the effort, and encouraged to become better.

         

        Second, about competitions and awards. I come from an area (Oaken, in the Middle Kingdom) where the bardic arts are not highly regarded or understood. I may be mistaken, but I believe the FIRST bardic arts Laurel in my local region is being elevated this coming September (yay, Zsof!), although there are others elsewhere in the Midrealm; there are no Kingdom-level awards specific to the bardic arts in the Midrealm (a good thing, some would say); and it's fairly frequent that the sitting Royals never get around to naming a Kingdom Bard. You, at least, live in a Kingdom where the bardic arts are celebrated and revered, so treasure that.

         

        I do think that bards are a lot less interested in competition, per se. After all, in every formal combat situation, there's a winner and a loser, and it's natural to recognize that with trophies and awards; but competition is certainly not inherent in the bardic arts. Many bards in my area prefer not to engage in competitions at all. I've found that there's much more interest in building community, mutual support, etc. - as evidenced by a couple (or all) of the sessions from this year's Collegium.

         

        But there's room for a mix. Around here, we've been trying to ensure there's some formal bardic activity at every event (as well as encouraging informal bardic activity), and we try to mix it up. More often than not, it's non-competitive (a bardic circle or equivalent, feast entertainment), but we also have competitions. Some people respond to that challenge in a way they don't to non-competitive ones. The lesson here, I think, is that if you want something to happen, you may have to do it yourself.

         

        My recommendation to you: Connect with a senior bard to be your mentor. You should overcome your reticence about approaching a Laurel for help. I've never met a bardic arts Laurel who wasn't open and friendly about encouraging youngsters like us*. My experience is that, *without exception*, Laurels and other senior bards are welcoming and encouraging, and most are wise enough to take you as you come and willing to help you develop in a way appropriate to your talents and interests.

         

        *  And truly, very few Laurels in other disciplines are snooty; OK, a few of them are unbearable, but not really all that many.

         

        Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

        __

        "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

         

         

        From: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Kate Braithwaite
        Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2011 8:03 PM
        To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

         

         

        Thank you for your kindness, I will say that I am new to the whole bardic 'thing'.  I wrote my first real song (not talking about the ditties I remember humming under my embarrassed breath when I was a child) only a little over two years ago, and became hooked.  I am an old woman (over 50) but so very young to the culture, including the SCA (only 3 1/2 years in Canada, 1 year in the US).  I really know so little about anything, and would love to be able to learn all I can:

         

        Where do you get ideas?

        How do you decide what kind of music to write?

        How do others write music?

        How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on (say) a bodhran?

        How do you step up to perform?

        How do you get a circle going?

        Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?

        How do you write support music?

        Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?

        How do I make my words fit the music better?

        How do I make my music fit the words better?

        How do I make my song more period?

        How can I get information together for writing songs about people and events?

        What is a bard, really?

        What is an apprentice?

        Why is an apprentice?

        How does one become an apprentice?

        What is involved in being an apprentice?

        What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a Laurel?

        How does one become a Laurel?

        How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?

        OK - I'll stop now but there are so many more things I want to know!!! *sigh* Any (all) of the above are of interest to me.  However, I have noted two things in the kingdoms I have played with.  The first is that people just seem to expect that old folks like me will just be able to launch out and do the things that interest them - when the truth, for many of us, is that the older we are, the more time we have had to accept our lack of talent, or have our 'failings' ground deeply into the soul - whereas the young may feel it more strongly, they also have more ability to push past their lack of self esteem in the performance arena.  Personally, for 50 years, I was told my voice was more painful to hear than nails on a chalkboard.  Every time I open my mouth to sing, I still hear my mother telling me to stop, please don't sing, "leave a bit of hope in the world that music can be enjoyable".  I am now told by some in the SCA, that my music doesn't, after all, make their ears bleed - and so I keep on because I want to be good, it's fun to write the songs, and I have hope.  Anyway - I'm pretty sure that I am not alone, and that those others who start the bardic trail at a more advanced age need as much education as the young ones - age does not always bring automatic knowledge.

         

        The other thing that I have discovered, less in Ealdormere than in my previous kingdom, is that the bardic arts seem to have a place around the fires but when it comes to accomplishments/accolades, fighting is what people notice, and that's about all they notice.  There are almost no bardic competitions - and the few that there are, are not very well recognized/publicized, but there are fighting competitions and awards at almost every event.  Even when there are bardic competitions, the winners are recognized at the event, and that is it.  Fighting awards make it to the kingdom web page, they wear their awards and are well recognized.  Surely the arts, and those who practice them deserve a bit more recognition/acceptance?

         

        One thing I can help with, is teaching you how to put the little black marks on the paper (notes) so that you can share your music with others - at least the basic stuff.

         

        'Nuff

        Widow Kate, Lady of the Lake 

         

        P.S. Help me Bardic Collegium - you are my last hope! (grin)

      • Mark Cipra
        Next year, in Slippery Rock ... Well, one thing all Laurels seem to have in common is that they love to talk! Maybe start by asking one of your questions? Why
        Message 3 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011

          Next year, in Slippery Rock ...

           

          Well, one thing all Laurels seem to have in common is that they love to talk! Maybe start by asking one of your questions? "Why aren't there more bardic competitions?" (or another one). It's short and you should be able to blurt it out quickly, but the answer isn't short. You can let him or her drone on for an hour or so. If you can do it when there are two or more gathered in one place, the conversation might go on all evening. A really perceptive Laurel may recognize your discomfort and will start gently engaging you in the conversation as well.

           

          Anyone else?

           

          Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

          __

          "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

           

           

          From: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Kate Braithwaite
          Sent: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 8:16 AM
          To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

           

           

          Wow!  What a wonderfully supportive response.  Gotta say, I really hope we meet some day.  In the meantime, any suggestions about overcoming the painful shyness and feelings of total inadequacy that engulf me every time I approach a laurel?  Stupid thing is, I irregularly speak with three of them, and they are remarkably approachable - it's just that I have so many years of being a waste of time and space that the nagging feeling persists.

          Thank you

          Widow Kate

           


          From: Mark Cipra <cipram@...>
          To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Wed, August 17, 2011 6:56:54 AM
          Subject: RE: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

           

          Well, OK, now there's a list of topics for future sessions! I'm sure some of them will get taken up right here. But I do want to respond to two items.

           

          First, I'm in almost exactly the same boat as you. Hideously ancient (over 50; "I've got ten years on the Pope!"), just started in the SCA a few years ago, and the SCA was my first extended opportunity at musical performance. I was once told to "just mouth the words" in a musical theater production. (If it's any help on that score, the first person I ever heard make the same confession was Mary Travers, of Peter, Paul and Mary. She seems to have done all right in spite of it.) I still don't sing other people's material (including true period pieces), because my voice isn't good enough for that, but it's good enough to carry my own stuff. This is a wonderful thing about the SCA - you're taken at your own level, applauded for the effort, and encouraged to become better.

           

          Second, about competitions and awards. I come from an area (Oaken, in the Middle Kingdom) where the bardic arts are not highly regarded or understood. I may be mistaken, but I believe the FIRST bardic arts Laurel in my local region is being elevated this coming September (yay, Zsof!), although there are others elsewhere in the Midrealm; there are no Kingdom-level awards specific to the bardic arts in the Midrealm (a good thing, some would say); and it's fairly frequent that the sitting Royals never get around to naming a Kingdom Bard. You, at least, live in a Kingdom where the bardic arts are celebrated and revered, so treasure that.

           

          I do think that bards are a lot less interested in competition, per se. After all, in every formal combat situation, there's a winner and a loser, and it's natural to recognize that with trophies and awards; but competition is certainly not inherent in the bardic arts. Many bards in my area prefer not to engage in competitions at all. I've found that there's much more interest in building community, mutual support, etc. - as evidenced by a couple (or all) of the sessions from this year's Collegium.

           

          But there's room for a mix. Around here, we've been trying to ensure there's some formal bardic activity at every event (as well as encouraging informal bardic activity), and we try to mix it up. More often than not, it's non-competitive (a bardic circle or equivalent, feast entertainment), but we also have competitions. Some people respond to that challenge in a way they don't to non-competitive ones. The lesson here, I think, is that if you want something to happen, you may have to do it yourself.

           

          My recommendation to you: Connect with a senior bard to be your mentor. You should overcome your reticence about approaching a Laurel for help. I've never met a bardic arts Laurel who wasn't open and friendly about encouraging youngsters like us*. My experience is that, *without exception*, Laurels and other senior bards are welcoming and encouraging, and most are wise enough to take you as you come and willing to help you develop in a way appropriate to your talents and interests.

           

          *  And truly, very few Laurels in other disciplines are snooty; OK, a few of them are unbearable, but not really all that many.

           

          Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

          __

          "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

           

           

          From: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Kate Braithwaite
          Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2011 8:03 PM
          To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

           

           

          Thank you for your kindness, I will say that I am new to the whole bardic 'thing'.  I wrote my first real song (not talking about the ditties I remember humming under my embarrassed breath when I was a child) only a little over two years ago, and became hooked.  I am an old woman (over 50) but so very young to the culture, including the SCA (only 3 1/2 years in Canada, 1 year in the US).  I really know so little about anything, and would love to be able to learn all I can:

           

          Where do you get ideas?

          How do you decide what kind of music to write?

          How do others write music?

          How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on (say) a bodhran?

          How do you step up to perform?

          How do you get a circle going?

          Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?

          How do you write support music?

          Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?

          How do I make my words fit the music better?

          How do I make my music fit the words better?

          How do I make my song more period?

          How can I get information together for writing songs about people and events?

          What is a bard, really?

          What is an apprentice?

          Why is an apprentice?

          How does one become an apprentice?

          What is involved in being an apprentice?

          What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a Laurel?

          How does one become a Laurel?

          How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?

          OK - I'll stop now but there are so many more things I want to know!!! *sigh* Any (all) of the above are of interest to me.  However, I have noted two things in the kingdoms I have played with.  The first is that people just seem to expect that old folks like me will just be able to launch out and do the things that interest them - when the truth, for many of us, is that the older we are, the more time we have had to accept our lack of talent, or have our 'failings' ground deeply into the soul - whereas the young may feel it more strongly, they also have more ability to push past their lack of self esteem in the performance arena.  Personally, for 50 years, I was told my voice was more painful to hear than nails on a chalkboard.  Every time I open my mouth to sing, I still hear my mother telling me to stop, please don't sing, "leave a bit of hope in the world that music can be enjoyable".  I am now told by some in the SCA, that my music doesn't, after all, make their ears bleed - and so I keep on because I want to be good, it's fun to write the songs, and I have hope.  Anyway - I'm pretty sure that I am not alone, and that those others who start the bardic trail at a more advanced age need as much education as the young ones - age does not always bring automatic knowledge.

           

          The other thing that I have discovered, less in Ealdormere than in my previous kingdom, is that the bardic arts seem to have a place around the fires but when it comes to accomplishments/accolades, fighting is what people notice, and that's about all they notice.  There are almost no bardic competitions - and the few that there are, are not very well recognized/publicized, but there are fighting competitions and awards at almost every event.  Even when there are bardic competitions, the winners are recognized at the event, and that is it.  Fighting awards make it to the kingdom web page, they wear their awards and are well recognized.  Surely the arts, and those who practice them deserve a bit more recognition/acceptance?

           

          One thing I can help with, is teaching you how to put the little black marks on the paper (notes) so that you can share your music with others - at least the basic stuff.

           

          'Nuff

          Widow Kate, Lady of the Lake 

           

          P.S. Help me Bardic Collegium - you are my last hope! (grin)

        • mathurin@gladiusinfractus.com
          I too am in the over 50 club. ... Read. Get really friendly with your local library, Google Books, Barnes & Noble, etc. ... I hum ( or diddle on some
          Message 4 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
            I too am in the over 50 club.

            > Where do you get ideas?

            Read. Get really friendly with your local library, Google Books, Barnes &
            Noble, etc.

            > How do you decide what kind of music to write?

            I hum ( or diddle on some instrument ) until something comes out I like,
            then I record it so I don't forget it. A small recording device is handy
            for this.

            > How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on
            > (say) a
            > bodhran?

            The same way you get to Carnegie Hall -- practice, practice, practice. :-)
            A good drummer is always welcome, a bad drummer is awful. Learn basic
            techniques, then play along with recordings of your favorites. Doesn't
            have to be SCA songs, anything that you can get into.

            > How do you step up to perform?

            The same way you enter cold water; dive in. Everybody has their own set of
            tricks, but they all pretty much come down to that.

            > How do you get a circle going?

            Start a fire, then start singing songs everyone knows.

            > Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?

            Mix it up. Alternate between upbeat/downbeat, standards/new stuff. This
            usually requires at least one person to run the circle, but several strong
            personalities that work well together can tag team it.

            > How do you write support music?

            Don't understand this question. Do you mean harmony?

            > Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?

            Pick a verse form ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poetry ), get a
            thesaurus, then play tetris until the words fit.

            > How do I make my words fit the music better?

            Don't get hung up on a particular word. English is a superlanguage, most
            words have many synonyms, and each has a slightly different
            shade/tone/color/shape of meaning. Find alternate words/phrases that fit
            the rhythm best; strangely enough, these usually are also better choices
            to carry the meaning.

            > How do I make my music fit the words better?

            Don't.

            > How do I make my song more period?

            Get familiar with Period styles, and imitate them. I am not a big fan of
            over-Periodizing bardic pieces; I think you should color your lyrics with
            enough word choices and phrasings to get the feel across, but remember
            always that your audience are not Period people.

            > How can I get information together for writing songs about people and
            > events?

            Current people and events? Sit around listening to stories. Period people
            and events? Read, read, read.

            > What is a bard, really?

            A poet, and a singer of songs. :-)

            > What is an apprentice?
            > Why is an apprentice?
            > How does one become an apprentice?
            > What is involved in being an apprentice?
            > What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a
            > Laurel?
            > How does one become a Laurel?

            This is all grist for another mill.

            > How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?

            Remember that they also look silly putting on their underwear. :-)

            --
            Mathurin
            "Non nobis solum"
          • Ann Seeton
            LOL! I m not quite in the over 50 club yet, but I m close as I am nearing fifty rather quickly. :) I ve wanted to be involved in SCA since college--that is
            Message 5 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
              LOL! I'm not quite in the over 50 club yet, but I'm close as I am nearing fifty rather quickly. :) 

              I've wanted to be involved in SCA since college--that is nearly 30 years ago now! yikes!  Anyway, I finally began going to local work meetings this past month.

              I walked into the home where we were meeting and the entire front hallway was floor to ceiling books... and I knew I'd found a group of my kind of people!!

              It has been fun.

              I have figured out that I have the music for several songs that are period.  I want to sing them in the Latin that they would have been sung in during period, any suggestions for where to get help with my pronunciation?  I would rather not learn it wrong.

              Ann

              On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 7:51 AM, <mathurin@...> wrote:
               

              I too am in the over 50 club.


            • mathurin@gladiusinfractus.com
              ... Easy tip for Latin pronunciation; vowel sounds = ah, eh, ee, oh, oo . No variation, no weird sounds produced by vowel combinations. Following that tip
              Message 6 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                > I have figured out that I have the music for several songs that are
                > period.
                > I want to sing them in the Latin that they would have been sung in during
                > period, any suggestions for where to get help with my pronunciation? I
                > would rather not learn it wrong.

                Easy tip for Latin pronunciation; vowel sounds = "ah, eh, ee, oh, oo". No
                variation, no weird sounds produced by vowel combinations. Following that
                tip will convince most people that you have mad Latin skills. :-)

                --
                Mathurin
                "Non nobis solum"
              • Kate Braithwaite
                Re the pronunciation - since it is a dead language no one is going to be right with a few standard rules that I was taught in highschool -long, long ago:
                Message 7 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                  Re the pronunciation - since it is a "dead language" no one is going to be right with a few standard rules that I was taught in highschool -long, long ago:
                  Pronounce every letter
                  C is like K
                  V is often U or W, depending...
                  CC is CH
                   
                  Widow Kate


                  From: Ann Seeton <gakaiaraan@...>
                  To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Wed, August 17, 2011 9:04:23 AM
                  Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

                   

                  LOL! I'm not quite in the over 50 club yet, but I'm close as I am nearing fifty rather quickly. :) 

                  I've wanted to be involved in SCA since college--that is nearly 30 years ago now! yikes!  Anyway, I finally began going to local work meetings this past month.

                  I walked into the home where we were meeting and the entire front hallway was floor to ceiling books... and I knew I'd found a group of my kind of people!!

                  It has been fun.

                  I have figured out that I have the music for several songs that are period.  I want to sing them in the Latin that they would have been sung in during period, any suggestions for where to get help with my pronunciation?  I would rather not learn it wrong.

                  Ann

                  On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 7:51 AM, <mathurin@...> wrote:
                   

                  I too am in the over 50 club.


                • Hilla Hamasdohtor
                  I teach on a fairly frequent class called Bardic Arts for Beginners (Or a similar name. But usually called that.) I cover a fair number of these topics on a
                  Message 8 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                    I teach on a fairly frequent class called "Bardic Arts for Beginners" (Or a similar name. But usually called that.) I cover a fair number of these topics on a rotating basis, so I'll have a go at it.
                    Where do you get ideas?
                    Everywhere and anywhere. One thing that is good to try when you're just starting out especially is to keep a notebook with you and write interesting things down. Things you see that inspire you. A phrase that gets stuck in your head. A rhyme or bit of alliteration. Pretty much anything can be a source of inspiration. For me it's usually weather. For other it might be animals. Another, events. Just note it so you don't forget it.
                    How do you decide what kind of music to write?
                    I don't, exactly. Often I find the music sort of writes itself as I am creating the words. But prior to that, I would write the piece first, then just look at it and kind of hum until something fit. This is when it is great to have a fall-back stock of period or period-sounding music that you can set stuff to. (Myself I had a poem I wrote and I came across it and thought it might be nice to sing. Then I remembered a little bit of music I'd created when I was nine. And, only slightly adapted, it fit. So, cool.)
                    How do others write music?
                    There are so many ways. Most of mine just comes to me. Or parts of it do, and then I just start singing bits of the song to it until other bits and bobs of notes come to my mind.
                    How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on (say) a bodhran?
                    As someone else said, practice, practice, practice.
                    How do you step up to perform?
                    Pretty much you just step up and do it. Some of it is situational. Like, in a bardic circle, just sit down, and eventually a chance will come for you to perform. Or enter a bardic competition. There your turn will be handed to you. Or volunteer to sing at feast if they're looking for performers. Or find a place where you can just sing. (At some events, Troll and the kitchen staff are very happy to be given a performance. So you can always ask there as well.) Now, it can take a lot of courage to get up and perform at feast, especially when there are a whole bunch of Royals there. I suggest starting out in circles, or even asking a friend or two if they mind you singing for them. The other thing that helps for me is to put myself in a bardic mindset. In other words, my persona is a bard. More specifically, my persona is a 7th-century Anglo-Saxon woman and scop who is very proud of who she is and of her duties as a bard. She's very cognizant of the power a bard has. Words shape reality. They change it. They make it this way or that way. So I draw on that strength, make it my own. (And admittedly, there have been a couple of times where a glass or two of mead and wine has helped calm nerves.) Oh, another good way to warm up to this is to join in on "sing-along" songs, like "Green Grow the Rushes-O".
                    How do you get a circle going?
                    Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?
                    One way is, as someone suggested, set up a physical circle, hopefully get a couple of people to sit with you, and start singing. Another way to do it is to volunteer beforehand, talk to event staff, and get it advertised. That way you have half your work done for you. If you know anyone on staff, you may even get them to send a herald around to announce it for you. Anyway, so, once you have the physical circle, just start the singing. It's usually a "if you build it, they will come" situation. Once the circle is established, it's not to hard to keep it going. You can decide if you want to have it flowing a certain way, whether it be free-form where everyone just jumps in when they want, or something more turn-based, such as "Pick, Pass, or Play". (Pick means the person whose turn it is chooses someone else to perform. After that person is done, the person next to the person who picked takes his/her turn. Pass is just that. I pass. Next person gets the turn. Play is someone performing something.)
                    How do you write support music?
                    I'm not sure what this is either.
                    Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?
                    Sit down and play with them, Don't push it. Don't be afraid to create, tear down, and re-create. If you have something specific you want to write about, put down an outline or list of what you want the song to say. Outline a story. (By the by, recitation of poems and telling of stories also counts as bardic. It doesn't *have* to be sung.) Understand thast, despite your best attempts, the song you end up writing is not the song you intended to write. Let this happen. (One of my best songs, the one that makes it rain, was originally supposed to be about the Shire of Ravenslake. Actually, every song I have tried to write about Ravenslake has morphed into something else. I'm still working on that Ravenslake song, but I've gotten a few verse-fragments and two really wonderful songs out of the attempts.) Also, you can choose a form for your song, (sonnet, couplet, alliterative verse, etc.) and the framework can help you guide the form your song takes. For this, reading about period and/or poetic forms or taking classes about them is superb. You can also ask people whose songs you like to give you pointers in general or about a specific type or form of song. I, for one, am always happy to lend a hand or an ear.
                    How do I make my words fit the music better?
                    How do I make my music fit the words better?
                    Again, a lot of this is practice. Feel free to adapt your own work. Ask others what they think. Try different things. Getting music and words to work together is an evolving process. practice it. Record it. Listen to it. Lather, rinse, repeat. When it sounds right, you'll know it. Or someone will tell you. Just remember to allow yourself to change and adapt. Even your favorite and most cherished bit of verse and music isn't perfect, so be willing to alter it and not get to attached to how it once was. Sometimes, though, we're our own worst critics. Ask someone or a group of someones that you trust if the music/words really need to fit better. Often times it's just our own perception, and the fit is actually just fine.
                    How do I make my song more period?
                    One way is to use period forms. The other is to use period music, or something that sounds period-ish. (Often called perioid.) Taking a bit of period music and writing your own words to it is just fine. ("What Child Is This?" took its tune from "Greensleeves", after all.) It is one way to go, and can help give you music to a song while you're working on creating your own music. Another way is to use period themes. For example, when I write Anglo-Saxon alliterative verse, I try to use themes similar to those found in Beowulf or other Anglo-Saxon verse. Another is to use words fitting your style of song. Again, with the alliterative stuff, I use "helm and hauberk" rather than "armor" because helm and hauberk are closer to what would have been used in period. I don't recommend writing in period language (like Chaucerian English) unless it's for an A&S competition.
                    How can I get information together for writing songs about people and events?
                    Go to the events or ask people about them. Ask the people involved. Ask people if they've got any stories they would like to share. Bring a notebook.
                    What is a bard, really?
                    In SCA parlance, a bard is someone who performs by singing, reciting poems, or storytelling, usually but not limited to pieces of his/her own creation.
                    What is an apprentice?
                    Why is an apprentice?
                    How does one become an apprentice?
                    What is involved in being an apprentice?
                    What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a Laurel?
                    How does one become a Laurel?
                    Not being a Laurel or an apprentice myself, this one rather mystifies me.
                    How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?
                    That Laurel over there? He or she goes to a mundane job too. Goes to Starbucks. Wears a T-shirt to the beach because the swimsuit looks ridiculous. Has to sit in traffic for an hour each way to get to and from work. Has to suck up to customers. Whatever. They're just people. They're recognized in the SCA for being particularly good at something. Just go talk to them. (Also, remember that good bards are not just restricted to the peerage. There are wonderful bards at all levels of award recognition. If you hear a bard performing who you want advice from, seek that person out, and don't worry if they're Laurels or not.

                    One of the reasons I love teaching my "Beginners" class is because I remember when I was beginning as a bard and I found it very difficult to start out. And so one of the things I love to do is nurture the bardic arts, to work with those who are just starting out as well as those who are getting back into it, or those who have written a long time and don't know how to start performing. I love to see younger people in my classes, but also love to see older people. It's harder as an older person (even me at 43) because, if you screw up, you don't have that "awww, how brave and cute that kid is" factor going for you. Just remember that even the best of us lose our voices, drift off-key, or forget the words we so carefully wrote. Just remember that even the best of us can have attacks of nerve when performing something new. And keep asking questions. The only "dumb" question is the one left un-voiced.

                    Yours in service,
                    Hilla Hamasdohtor
                    She-who-makes-it-rain
                  • Mark Cipra
                    It might be good for you to give this class immediately before our first real Collegium session next year (this year, that would have been 3-4pm on War Week
                    Message 9 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011

                      It might be good for you to give this class immediately before our first "real" Collegium session next year (this year, that would have been 3-4pm on War Week Monday).

                       

                      Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

                      __

                      "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

                       

                       

                      From: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Hilla Hamasdohtor
                      Sent: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 11:27 AM
                      To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium

                       

                       

                      I teach on a fairly frequent class called "Bardic Arts for Beginners" (Or a similar name. But usually called that.) I cover a fair number of these topics on a rotating basis, so I'll have a go at it.

                      Where do you get ideas?

                      Everywhere and anywhere. One thing that is good to try when you're just starting out especially is to keep a notebook with you and write interesting things down. Things you see that inspire you. A phrase that gets stuck in your head. A rhyme or bit of alliteration. Pretty much anything can be a source of inspiration. For me it's usually weather. For other it might be animals. Another, events. Just note it so you don't forget it.

                      How do you decide what kind of music to write?

                      I don't, exactly. Often I find the music sort of writes itself as I am creating the words. But prior to that, I would write the piece first, then just look at it and kind of hum until something fit. This is when it is great to have a fall-back stock of period or period-sounding music that you can set stuff to. (Myself I had a poem I wrote and I came across it and thought it might be nice to sing. Then I remembered a little bit of music I'd created when I was nine. And, only slightly adapted, it fit. So, cool.)

                      How do others write music?

                      There are so many ways. Most of mine just comes to me. Or parts of it do, and then I just start singing bits of the song to it until other bits and bobs of notes come to my mind.

                      How do I learn to accompany myself, and help in a circle a little on (say) a bodhran?

                      As someone else said, practice, practice, practice.

                      How do you step up to perform?

                      Pretty much you just step up and do it. Some of it is situational. Like, in a bardic circle, just sit down, and eventually a chance will come for you to perform. Or enter a bardic competition. There your turn will be handed to you. Or volunteer to sing at feast if they're looking for performers. Or find a place where you can just sing. (At some events, Troll and the kitchen staff are very happy to be given a performance. So you can always ask there as well.) Now, it can take a lot of courage to get up and perform at feast, especially when there are a whole bunch of Royals there. I suggest starting out in circles, or even asking a friend or two if they mind you singing for them. The other thing that helps for me is to put myself in a bardic mindset. In other words, my persona is a bard. More specifically, my persona is a 7th-century Anglo-Saxon woman and scop who is very proud of who she is and of her duties as a bard. She's very cognizant of the power a bard has. Words shape reality. They change it. They make it this way or that way. So I draw on that strength, make it my own. (And admittedly, there have been a couple of times where a glass or two of mead and wine has helped calm nerves.) Oh, another good way to warm up to this is to join in on "sing-along" songs, like "Green Grow the Rushes-O".

                      How do you get a circle going?

                      Once you get it going, how do you keep it going?

                      One way is, as someone suggested, set up a physical circle, hopefully get a couple of people to sit with you, and start singing. Another way to do it is to volunteer beforehand, talk to event staff, and get it advertised. That way you have half your work done for you. If you know anyone on staff, you may even get them to send a herald around to announce it for you. Anyway, so, once you have the physical circle, just start the singing. It's usually a "if you build it, they will come" situation. Once the circle is established, it's not to hard to keep it going. You can decide if you want to have it flowing a certain way, whether it be free-form where everyone just jumps in when they want, or something more turn-based, such as "Pick, Pass, or Play". (Pick means the person whose turn it is chooses someone else to perform. After that person is done, the person next to the person who picked takes his/her turn. Pass is just that. I pass. Next person gets the turn. Play is someone performing something.)

                      How do you write support music?

                      I'm not sure what this is either.

                      Now that I have an idea for a song, how do I wrote the words?

                      Sit down and play with them, Don't push it. Don't be afraid to create, tear down, and re-create. If you have something specific you want to write about, put down an outline or list of what you want the song to say. Outline a story. (By the by, recitation of poems and telling of stories also counts as bardic. It doesn't *have* to be sung.) Understand thast, despite your best attempts, the song you end up writing is not the song you intended to write. Let this happen. (One of my best songs, the one that makes it rain, was originally supposed to be about the Shire of Ravenslake. Actually, every song I have tried to write about Ravenslake has morphed into something else. I'm still working on that Ravenslake song, but I've gotten a few verse-fragments and two really wonderful songs out of the attempts.) Also, you can choose a form for your song, (sonnet, couplet, alliterative verse, etc.) and the framework can help you guide the form your song takes. For this, reading about period and/or poetic forms or taking classes about them is superb. You can also ask people whose songs you like to give you pointers in general or about a specific type or form of song. I, for one, am always happy to lend a hand or an ear.

                      How do I make my words fit the music better?

                      How do I make my music fit the words better?

                      Again, a lot of this is practice. Feel free to adapt your own work. Ask others what they think. Try different things. Getting music and words to work together is an evolving process. practice it. Record it. Listen to it. Lather, rinse, repeat. When it sounds right, you'll know it. Or someone will tell you. Just remember to allow yourself to change and adapt. Even your favorite and most cherished bit of verse and music isn't perfect, so be willing to alter it and not get to attached to how it once was. Sometimes, though, we're our own worst critics. Ask someone or a group of someones that you trust if the music/words really need to fit better. Often times it's just our own perception, and the fit is actually just fine.

                      How do I make my song more period?

                      One way is to use period forms. The other is to use period music, or something that sounds period-ish. (Often called perioid.) Taking a bit of period music and writing your own words to it is just fine. ("What Child Is This?" took its tune from "Greensleeves", after all.) It is one way to go, and can help give you music to a song while you're working on creating your own music. Another way is to use period themes. For example, when I write Anglo-Saxon alliterative verse, I try to use themes similar to those found in Beowulf or other Anglo-Saxon verse. Another is to use words fitting your style of song. Again, with the alliterative stuff, I use "helm and hauberk" rather than "armor" because helm and hauberk are closer to what would have been used in period. I don't recommend writing in period language (like Chaucerian English) unless it's for an A&S competition.

                      How can I get information together for writing songs about people and events?

                      Go to the events or ask people about them. Ask the people involved. Ask people if they've got any stories they would like to share. Bring a notebook.

                      What is a bard, really?

                      In SCA parlance, a bard is someone who performs by singing, reciting poems, or storytelling, usually but not limited to pieces of his/her own creation.

                      What is an apprentice?

                      Why is an apprentice?

                      How does one become an apprentice?

                      What is involved in being an apprentice?

                      What - other than an master/mistress of an art form, and a peer - is a Laurel?

                      How does one become a Laurel?

                      Not being a Laurel or an apprentice myself, this one rather mystifies me.

                      How do you talk to a laurel with feeling gormless/tongue-tied?

                      That Laurel over there? He or she goes to a mundane job too. Goes to Starbucks. Wears a T-shirt to the beach because the swimsuit looks ridiculous. Has to sit in traffic for an hour each way to get to and from work. Has to suck up to customers. Whatever. They're just people. They're recognized in the SCA for being particularly good at something. Just go talk to them. (Also, remember that good bards are not just restricted to the peerage. There are wonderful bards at all levels of award recognition. If you hear a bard performing who you want advice from, seek that person out, and don't worry if they're Laurels or not.

                      One of the reasons I love teaching my "Beginners" class is because I remember when I was beginning as a bard and I found it very difficult to start out. And so one of the things I love to do is nurture the bardic arts, to work with those who are just starting out as well as those who are getting back into it, or those who have written a long time and don't know how to start performing. I love to see younger people in my classes, but also love to see older people. It's harder as an older person (even me at 43) because, if you screw up, you don't have that "awww, how brave and cute that kid is" factor going for you. Just remember that even the best of us lose our voices, drift off-key, or forget the words we so carefully wrote. Just remember that even the best of us can have attacks of nerve when performing something new. And keep asking questions. The only "dumb" question is the one left un-voiced.

                      Yours in service,
                      Hilla Hamasdohtor
                      She-who-makes-it-rain

                    • Greg Lindahl
                      ... Actually, quite a lot is known about pronouncing Latin in the Middle Ages. May I suggest: McGee, Timothy James. _Singing Early Music: The Pronunciation of
                      Message 10 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                        On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 06:29:31AM -0700, Kate Braithwaite wrote:

                        > Re the pronunciation - since it is a "dead language" no one is going to be right

                        Actually, quite a lot is known about pronouncing Latin in the Middle
                        Ages. May I suggest:

                        McGee, Timothy James. _Singing Early Music: The Pronunciation of
                        European Languages in the Late Middle Ages and Renaissance_.
                        Indiana University Press, 1996. ISBN 0-253-32961.

                        http://www.indiana.edu/~iupress/spr96/mcgee.html

                        GL: A comprehensive answer to the question, "So how the heck am I
                        supposed to be pronouncing this, anyway?" Includes a CD of examples.
                        Covers: English, Scots, Anglo-Latin, Old French, French
                        Latin, Occitan, Catalan, Spanish, Spanish Latin, Portuguese,
                        Portuguese Latin, Italian, Italian Latin, Middle High German,
                        Late Medieval German and Early New High German, German
                        Latin, Flemish, and Netherlands Latin.

                        > with a few standard rules that I was taught in highschool -long, long ago:
                        > Pronounce every letter
                        > C is like K
                        > V is often U or W, depending...
                        > CC is CH
                        >
                        > Widow Kate
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > ________________________________
                        > From: Ann Seeton <gakaiaraan@...>
                        > To: SCA_BARDS@yahoogroups.com
                        > Sent: Wed, August 17, 2011 9:04:23 AM
                        > Subject: Re: [SCA_BARDS] Bardic Collegium
                        >
                        >  
                        > LOL! I'm not quite in the over 50 club yet, but I'm close as I am nearing fifty
                        > rather quickly. :) 
                        >
                        >
                        > I've wanted to be involved in SCA since college--that is nearly 30 years ago
                        > now! yikes!  Anyway, I finally began going to local work meetings this past
                        > month.
                        >
                        > I walked into the home where we were meeting and the entire front hallway was
                        > floor to ceiling books... and I knew I'd found a group of my kind of people!!
                        >
                        > It has been fun.
                        >
                        > I have figured out that I have the music for several songs that are period.  I
                        > want to sing them in the Latin that they would have been sung in during period,
                        > any suggestions for where to get help with my pronunciation?  I would rather not
                        > learn it wrong.
                        >
                        > Ann
                        >
                        >
                        > On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 7:51 AM, <mathurin@...> wrote:
                        >
                        >  
                        > >I too am in the over 50 club.
                        > >
                      • mathurin@gladiusinfractus.com
                        ... That link did not work, but a quick search on the site yielded this one; http://www.iupress.indiana.edu/product_info.php?products_id=21957 -- Mathurin Non
                        Message 11 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                          > McGee, Timothy James. _Singing Early Music: The Pronunciation of
                          > European Languages in the Late Middle Ages and Renaissance_.
                          > Indiana University Press, 1996. ISBN 0-253-32961.
                          >
                          > http://www.indiana.edu/~iupress/spr96/mcgee.html

                          That link did not work, but a quick search on the site yielded this one;

                          http://www.iupress.indiana.edu/product_info.php?products_id=21957

                          --
                          Mathurin
                          "Non nobis solum"
                        • Greg Lindahl
                          ... Thanks for the update, the early music annotated bibliography that I pulled this out of doesn t have any link checking... and that page moved sometime
                          Message 12 of 25 , Aug 17, 2011
                            On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 01:41:05PM -0700, mathurin@... wrote:

                            > > http://www.indiana.edu/~iupress/spr96/mcgee.html
                            >
                            > That link did not work, but a quick search on the site yielded this one;
                            >
                            > http://www.iupress.indiana.edu/product_info.php?products_id=21957

                            Thanks for the update, the early music annotated bibliography that I
                            pulled this out of doesn't have any link checking... and that page
                            moved sometime before 2003. D'oh!

                            -- Gregory
                          • Mark Cipra
                            Where do you get ideas? The everywhere and anywhere folks are right, of course. One thought that may or may not help: I find that I write well when I
                            Message 13 of 25 , Aug 18, 2011

                              Where do you get ideas?

                               

                              The "everywhere and anywhere" folks are right, of course. One thought that may or may not help: I find that I write well when I challenge myself with writing something for an occasion - a themed competition; a Coronation, dedication of a Barony, etc.

                               

                              The nature of the occasion will often suggest the form. Thus: If the competition theme is "War", this calls for a war song - and there are a lot of examples out there for inspiration. Since the people being crowned were Vikings, this suggested alliterative verse, or at least verse with careful use of alliteration in it. The baronial dedication suggested an ode, so I explored other people's odes, and found a congenial, period verse form to use.

                               

                              The occasion may also suggest the content. Obviously praise-pieces will incorporate historical material about the subjects. For the war song, I decided my strength was humor, not a clear understanding of combat, so it became the comic tale of an inept warrior. And so forth.

                               

                              These aren't my best pieces (the ideas for those seem to drop from the heavens), but they're good, journeyman work; and the ideas didn't have to "come from" anywhere - they were right there in front of me. You mileage may vary.

                               

                              One thing to remember is that you will write a lot of bad stuff, because everyone does. Sturgeon's Law: "90% of Science Fiction is crap because 90% of everything is crap." Llywelyn's corollary: "If you're not throwing away 90% of what you write, you're not working hard enough." (Okay, 90% is high, even for most beginners; and the percentage will decrease, probably, as you get better. Although mine seems to be holding steady. Don't know what that says.)

                               

                              Llywelyn Glyndyverdwy, called Glyndwr (Mark Cipra)

                              __

                              "When in doubt, end with a jig" - Robin McCauley

                               

                               

                              __

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