Time to combine several of my nerdy enjoyments and slap books and music together. This is one of the more common combinations, especially considering that I have several videos on Youtube centered around this concept: we’re going to try and find some songs that match books!
Movies have soundtracks, television shows have soundtracks, video games have soundtracks. Let’s give some books some soundtracks.
As I said, I’ve seen some videos surrounding this idea but I’ve also found myself applying songs to writing on my own as well. With that said, I’ll be tossing in these first two which are the lead songs to the novels I am currently writing on:
My first novel was really what got me applying songs to books because I heard this song and realized, yep this is the mood I’m trying to get at.
The song is “Youth” by Daughter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEpMj-tqixs
My second novel, the sequel to the first and thus trying to deal with the fallout from the events of the first novel so its song I felt really needed to recognize mistakes and the desire for forgiveness.
The song I’ve picked is “Leave Out All the Rest” by Linkin Park: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZIummTz9mM
So, with those two personal ones out of the way I guess its finally time to get onto some books that other people may have actually read or know! I should note that I’m generally be avoiding music actually designed as fan songs about these books. So, no Wizard Rock for Harry Potter. Maybe that’ll be a different post later on.
Let’s start with one of my big storytellers and one of the oldest stories written down. One of the classics: The Iliad. A war story that has a strong anti-war message in just how explicit the death and violence included in the descriptions. Every person that dies has a history and a family and a life. This song choice is another one of the easier ones for me because I’ve kept this song in mind much of the time I originally read the epic – it certainly sounds epic enough to fight to but its lyrics also speak more to the want of war to end.
“Take Me Away” by Globus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nioflv9Xn5I
Let’s try J.R.R. Tolkien’s the Hobbit. On my Youtube channel I started a literature exploration series called Book and Page and the first book the series went over was the Hobbit. Meaning I’ve taken a look at it up and down. And I’ll say it is hard to ignore the music that went to the movies (even if I didn’t agree with all the choices the movies made) but I’m setting those ones aside and picking one of my own. I picked this one to try and represent Bilbo at the end of the story and his decision to return to the Shire, even after everything.
“Calls Me Home” by Shannon LaBrie: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rj4AoGm6tAY
With the Hobbit has to come the Lord of the Rings. And as a series, its harder to put one song to it. And really, a real soundtrack has multiple tracks and since LotR is usually divided into three books then there would be three soundtracks so any song I pick isn’t going to encompass the entirety of the series. Though I have found one I like! This one I hope picks up the violence the characters find themselves embroiled in (especially the hobbits) and how they have to fight to survive and save what they love.
“Rise” by Skillet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3jQ0tFqG_0
Switching up genres I’m going to throw in John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars! This is one of those books that just punches me in the heart, the gut, and the feels. I literally read this aloud to my mother on a trip out to start a new year at university and the two of us sobbed like babies (which, considering she was driving probably wasn’t the safest things). So, a sad song that encapsulates trying to come to terms with life and death is needed so hopefully people understand why I picked this one.
“You” by Keaton Henson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxQLNxFA1Mg
People were probably waiting for the Harry Potter choice considering I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned Harry Potter in all three of my blog posts so far. Well, I’m writing my MA thesis involving Harry Potter so I’ve been very involved in it. That makes song choices both easier and harder because you realize how complicated the story and characters actually are but also just everything makes you think about the stupid beautiful thing. So here it goes: a song to talk about Harry’s history, his school, his friends, his fight, and his life!
“The Nights” by Avicii: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSnBlJbvX1E
So, I think I’ll leave this first Book Soundtrack post here. This is actually a whole lot harder than I thought it would be! Go ahead and drop a comment with any of your own song suggestions for these books and series and why you think they fit. Feel free to let me know if you want a second Book Soundtrack post and, if so, what books you want me to try and match music to!