Writing Music: I See Fire


I listen to quite a variety of music while I write, from instrumental pieces to Disney songs. And sometimes I like to listen to acappella music. As a musician myself, I really appreciate the effort that goes into acappella music to make it sound as full and rounded as songs with instruments. My favourite acapella musician is Peter Hollens, who creates all his music using just his voice and a few claps or stomps for percussion. His music ranges from popular songs, to musicals, to folk tunes.O ne of my favourite pieces of his is I See Fire from The Desolation of Smaug.

This song is perfect for a desperate quest that could end in disaster at any moment, or a tense moment at the climax where everything hangs in balance, the sort of time when the villain looks pretty certain to win unless the other characters can pull off some spectacular feat to stop him. I find this piece is especially effective when I’m writing fantasy. The constant pulse of the percussion drives me onward, rushing toward the conclusion of the event, scene, or chapter.

What sort of scene does this piece suggest to you? Do you enjoy listening to acappella music? What are you listening to at the moment?

Want to hear the original song? You can find it HERE. I'd recommend listening to it. Both versions are beautiful.

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  1. Ohhh, I so love this song. I love it very very much. Except, does Ed Sheeran sing it?? I thought he sang it, but that's definitely not him. (Miiiiiime, have you been leading me astray?!! SHE told me it was Ed Sheeran.) ANYHOW. Off topic. I don't listen to music half as much as I used to. Particularly when I write! I usually stick to movie soundtracks, or else I get distracted. Right now I'm stuck on the Transformers soundtrack, and a bit of Birdy, when I'm having a break. ;)

  2. Mime is telling the truth this time. Ed Sheeran did the original. This is my favourite cover of it. The video to go with the song is just so pretty. I haven't heard much of the Transformers soundtrack yet, but I love what I've heard. Must look it up. Birdy has such a pretty voice. Thanks for commenting!


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