pale horse sailor – “Vingilot”


Blessed are the men of Noah’s race that build
their little arks, though frail and poorly filled,
and steer through winds contrary towards a wraith,
a rumour of a harbour guessed by faith.


I once dreamed of playing in a band: of making records, of touring, of creating something I could be proud of and that others would love. However, I gave up on that dream a long time ago, and I never really thought of myself as a songwriter. That was something others did. I was a spectator, or, at best, just the bass player.

However, a few years ago, inspired by Tolkien’s idea of subcreation, I picked up a guitar and started playing again for the first time in ages. This time around, the songs seemed to pour out of me. Before long, I was starting to think of my songwriting as something I could actually share with others. “Vingilot” (below) is the first-fruits of that work.

https://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/track=3228924795/size=large/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/tracklist=false/artwork=small/transparent=true/

I have so much more to tell you, but I don’t want to say too much, at least not yet. The music should speak for itself, so I hope you’ll check out “vingilot”. It’s an instrumental; I’d even call it a musical manifesto with no words (er, Tolk-Rock?). Lyrics will come later, but I think “vingilot” speaks for itself.

I hope you’ll dig it, and let me know if you do (comment, share, email, buy/donate, etc). More to follow very soon.

pale-horse-sailor-vingilot

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Thoughts on a Silmarillion Film Pt 6: A TV Show in 6 Seasons

In my last article in this series, I stated why I’d be more interested in seeing The Silmarillion done as a high-quality, multi-season TV production than in the form of a series of films (even a trilogy of trilogies). In this one, I’ll lay out (at a high level) how I’d see the TV show playing out.

In short, I see The Silmarillion being done in 6 seasons of 10 episodes each. Here’s a look at what each season would encompass. Over the next few posts in this series, I’ll elaborate with more specifics on each season.

silmarillion-cover-cr2

Season 1 – The Awakening of the Elves: Season 1 would be primarily concerned with the journey of the Elves to the Blessed Realm under peril from Melkor. Basically, Chapter 3 would be in focus here. Everything before (Ainulindalë, Chapters 1 & 2) is background and would be handled as flashbacks/intro/stage setting. It would end on something of a high note, with the Elves arriving safely in Valinor and Melkor defeated and imprisoned. However, there would be a note of dread about the awakening of Ungoliant, and the secret machinations of Melkor to corrupt and destroy the Elves no matter the cost.

Season 2 – The Darkening of Valinor: Chapters 5 thru 8. Season 2 would take place almost entirely in the Blessed Realm, and would focus on Melkor’s manipulations, ending with the destruction of the Two Trees, the theft of the Silmarils, the murder of Finwë, Valinor in darkness, and Melkor and Ungoliant on the run.

Season 3 – The Pursuit of Melkor: Chapters 9 thru 13. Season 3 focuses on the Oath of Fëanor, the kinslaying, the break with the Valar, and the bickering of Melkor and Ungoliant. It ends with the death of Fëanor.

Season 4 – The Wars of Beleriand: Chapter 16 thru 18. Season 4 picks up some time after the death of Fëanor, after the Noldor have established themselves in Beleriand, and with the arrival of Men. This season would focus on the battles against Angband leading up to the Battle of Sudden Flame and ending with the death of Fingolfin.

Season 5 – Beren, Lúthien, Túrin: Chapters 19 thru 21. Season 5 focuses on Beren and Lúthien for the first half, and then, from that high point, descends into even greater tragedy with the Battle of Unnumbered Tears and the story of Túrin and the fall of Nargothrond.

Season 6 – The Journey of Eärendil and the End of the First Age: Chapters 22 thru 24. Season 6 focuses on the fall of Gondolin and the ever-increasing desperation of the peoples of Beleriand. It ends with Eärendil’s journey and the War of Wrath.

Let me just close with this: I truly hope this happens one day. I think The Silmarillion contains material that could make for utterly compelling TV. If put in the right hands (a show runner that respects the source material and Tolkien’s vision), it could be one of the best shows ever.

Here are the previous posts in this series:

The Tolkien Road – Ep. 60 – The Lord of the Rings – B2C1 – Many Meetings

Concerning “Many Meetings”, Book 2, Chapter 1 of The Lord of the Rings…

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Hey there fellow travelers! Welcome to The Tolkien Road, a long walk through the works and philosophy of J.R.R. Tolkien. On this episode, we return to The Lord of the Rings with Book 2, Chapter 1, “Many Meetings.” Although it’s not the most action-packed chapter, there’s plenty to discuss, from Gandalf’s whereabouts to the ways of Rivendell to the song of Eärendil. By the way, if you haven’t already, please leave The Tolkien Road a rating and feedback on iTunes. We’d love to know what you think of the podcast. Enjoy the show!

the-tolkien-road
©2013-2016 rfcunha

Topics of discussion…

  • Favorite Passages – 14:00
  • Frodo Wakes Up – 19:00
  • A Conversation with Gandalf – 22:00
  • Rivendell & the Feast – 33:30
  • Frodo & Bilbo – 44:30
  • The Song of Eärendil – 57:00
  • A Hymn to Elbereth – 1:04:30

Thanks for listening to The Tolkien Road! To see a list of our previous episodes, go here.

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The Tolkien Road – Ep. 58 – The Silmarillion – Ch. 24 – Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath

Concerning “Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath”, Chapter 24 of The Silmarillion…

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Hey there fellow travelers! Welcome to The Tolkien Road, a long walk through the works and philosophy of J.R.R. Tolkien. On this episode, we discuss the final chapter of The Silmarillion, wherein Eärendil makes his fateful voyage to the Blessed Realm in order to obtain the aid of the Valar.  The First Age ends here, and as you might expect, it’s a very eventful chapter, complete with the downfall of Morgoth, the doom of Fëanor’s sons, and the fate of the Silmarils. There’s a whole lot to discuss!  By the way, if you haven’t already, please leave The Tolkien Road a rating and feedback on iTunes. We’d love to know what you think of the podcast. Enjoy the show!

the-tolkien-road
©2013-2016 rfcunha

Topics of discussion…

  • Haiku – 9:45
  • Eärendil & Elwing – 18:00
  • The Third Kinslaying – 24:30
  • Return to Valinor – 30:00
  • Eärendil the Star-sailor – 37:00
  • The War of Wrath & the Downfall of Morgoth – 44:00
  • Maedhros, Maglor, and the Oath – 54:00
  • The Return of the Exiles – 61:00

By the way, check out the summary of this chapter I did for the Beginner’s Guide.

Thanks for listening to The Tolkien Road! To see a list of our previous episodes, go here.

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The following haiku were submitted but not read on air:

Josh Sosa

One in earth, one lost
at sea, one hangs in heaven . . .
Silmarils now gone

Mary Grace

Hail Earendil!
A mortal that saw Undying Lands
And lived to tell.

Maglor and Maedhros
Have at last the Silmarils
And fled into Doom.

Lars Werkman

Bitterly sworn oath
Ilúvatar named in witness
All ends in despair

John Carswell

with swift wrath, the world
is changed; morgoth bound once more.
for good? none can know.

The Tolkien Road – Ep. 56 – The Silmarillion – Ch. 23 – Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin

Concerning “Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin”, Chapter 23 of The Silmarillion…

Hey there fellow travelers! Welcome to The Tolkien Road, a long walk through the works and philosophy of J.R.R. Tolkien.  On this episode, we continue our discussion of The Silmarillion with Chapter 23, “Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin”, wherein Tuor the son of Huor comes to Gondolin with a dire warning from Ulmo. There’s a whole lot to discuss!  By the way, if you haven’t already, please leave The Tolkien Road a rating and feedback on iTunes. We’d love to know what you think of the podcast. Enjoy the show!

the-tolkien-road
©2013-2016 rfcunha

Topics of discussion…

  • Haiku – 4:00
  • Tuor’s Background – 15:30
  • Ulmo & Tuor – 21:00
  • Turgon Won’t Heed Ulmo’s Warning – 30:00
  • Tuor, Idril & Maeglin’s Plot – 39:00
  • Tuor, Idril, and Eärendil – 42:00
  • Morgoth Attacks; Glorfindel’s Heroics – 52:00
  • Tuor & Idril Flee to Arvernien – 1:00:00
  • Ulmo & the Valar – 1:02:30
  • Tuor & Idril Into the West? – 1:06:30

By the way, check out the summary of this chapter I did for the Beginner’s Guide.

Thanks for listening to The Tolkien Road! To see a list of our previous episodes, go here.

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