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Another album for the Dogs in the Vineyard Soundtrack

Started by Judd, October 17, 2005, 09:28:37 PM

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Darcy Burgess

In my mind, 3 albums would work for DitV

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds -- Murder Ballads
A3 - la Peste
The Young Gods play Kurt Weill

especially the Young Gods.  Damn, yes!

Interestingly, none of these have a particularly "western" feel, although they all go a little Trip-hop-abilly at times.
Black Cadillacs - Your soapbox about War.  Use it.

Jason Morningstar

Just listened to Freakwater's "End Time" again last night and realized it is highly Dogworthy.  It occurs to me that it might be interesting to assign songs to particular characters and introduce them simultaneously - a couple of the songs on End Time would lend themselves to this.  There's a love-lorn lament (Sick, Sick, Sick, which includes the lyrics "Cupid's arrow has just made a big mistake") and sad ballads. There's also a cheery trifle called "Dog Gone Wrong" about a blood-crazy sheep-killing dog.


Ween - Buenos Tardes Amigo and various Calexico songs come into mind, although both are quite mesoamerican. Nonethelss, nice non-movie-soundtrack music to consider.


Matt Wilson

Bill Frisell's Ghost Town makes for some good background music. I also used a bit of it for a Firefly spinoff game.


The Cold Mountain soundtrack was a great pick.

I would add a recommendation for Appalachian Journey, with Edgar Meyer, Yo-Yo Ma, Mark O'Connor, James Taylor and Alison Krauss.
Winning gives birth to hostility.
Losing, one lies down in pain.
The calmed lie down with ease,
having set winning & losing aside.

- Samyutta Nikaya III, 14


Gillian Welch also has some amazing stuff, perfect for a Dogs soundtrack.  For those who aren't familiar with Gillian, she's one of the trio of magnificent voices (along with Alison Krauss and Emmylou Harris) responsible for some of the most memorable tracks in O Brother, Where Art Thou.  Gillian covers an Irish ballad, "The Wind and the Rain," on the Songcatcher soundtrack.  Her "Rock of Ages" is also good (not a cover of the old hymn).  And of course, anything from O Brother is just wonderful, whether it's by Welch and company, or Union Station, or whomever.

One tune I stumbled across while listening to otherwise un-Doglike music is Magnetic Fields, "Kiss Me Like You Mean It."  It's on the second volume of the 69 Love Songs collection, and it combines a folky sound with some rather unfolksy lyrics.  I mean, the song starts out "He is my lord, he is my savior, and he rewards my good behavior.  My secret soul, I know he's seen it.  He's says Come here baby and kiss me like you mean it."  Not exactly old-time religion, but hey, quirky stuff has its place, right?

John Prine also has some tunes that work, including "Please Don't Bury Me."  So do some semi-forgotten Southern Rock bands.  For instance, The Band has a cover of "Cripple Creek" that isn't bad at all, and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band has "Party on the Mountain."  Heck, Creedence has quite a few appropriate songs, if you don't mind rocking your soundtrack.  And Bad Company's title song is very nice, as well.

Finally, there's a band called 16 Horsepower that has some very appropriate tunes for a Dogs game.  I'm using their cover of CCR's "Bad Moon Rising" (from their album, Hoarse) at my next session.  The album, Secret South, is also worth a listen, if only for the song, "Wayfaring Stranger," which is pure Dogs.


Quote from: Neal on October 31, 2005, 09:31:46 PM
Finally, there's a band called 16 Horsepower that has some very appropriate tunes for a Dogs game.  I'm using their cover of CCR's "Bad Moon Rising" (from their album, Hoarse) at my next session.  The album, Secret South, is also worth a listen, if only for the song, "Wayfaring Stranger," which is pure Dogs.

To me, 16 Horsepower is (or rather, was) Dogs in The Vineyard, and i especially recommend Secret South. You got your fire and brimstone, your love and serenity and your creeping surreal tone. Of course, I haven't checked out all these other bands myself, so I don't know how 16HP hold up against them. :)

A site for 16 Horsepower and its sister band Woven Hand.
-Arvid Axbrink Cederholm


If you like Stone Coyotes, check out Be Good Tanyas, especially the Blue Horse CD.  I especially like their version of "Oh Susanna," and I've mixed "The Littlest Birds" and "Only in the Past" into my DitV music. 


Oh yeah, oh yeah. I really dig their rendition of "Rain and Snow."



Quote from: lumpley on November 08, 2005, 03:50:08 PM
Oh yeah, oh yeah. I really dig their rendition of "Rain and Snow."

Thanks for reminding me of that track, Vincent.  My game next week takes place in a snowy mountain pass, and a blizzard is how the Demons Attack.  This track will go nicely.

And while we're on the subject of Be Good Tanyas, I'll recommend another song: "In My Time of Dying."  Nice Dogs material, that.

Also, check out Neko Case.  Some of her stuff is straight-up Country, but she's also got some folkier songs I couldn't resist mixing into my "Dogs in the Background" CDs.  Her version of "Poor Ellen Smith" (from the Canadian Amp CD) is my favorite, and that album also includes "Make Your Bed," another nice Dogs tune.  Her Blacklisted CD is good, too, with songs like "Things That Scare Me" and "Deep Red Bells."

One thing I've taken to doing just recently is mixing some Irish reels, some Quebecois folk tunes, and a little old-fashioned Cajun into my background listening.  I had been sticking to Bluegrass and Gospel tunes, but these "foreign" elements don't seem to do violence to my game's mood, so in they went.  I can especially recommend Silly Wizard for reels, though the Boondock Saints OST has some nice Irish tunes, as well.  If you're looking for good Cajun (not Zydeco, mind you; Cajun is to Zydeco as Roots Reggae is to Dancehall), you should pick up anything by Jay Cormier. [Disclosure: I saw several of Jay's shows with Cajun Country while living in New Orleans, so account for my bias.]

Anyone who can recommend some good Quebecois music that isn't just an isolated track on some sampler, I'm all ears.

Also, has anyone checked out the soundtrack for the film Ravenous?  Is it Dogs material?

Chris Peterson

I really like Neil Young's "Dead Man". It's the dark, atmospheric soundtrack to Jim Jarmusch's film "Dead Man" (1996).



Yeah, I used "Powderfinger" in my first session, both Neil's version and the one by Cowboy Junkies.

I just discovered there's a CD called "Road to Cold Mountain" (or something similar) which features a lot of old Appalachian tunes.  Has anyone heard this?  If so, how's the audio quality?  Are we talking about tinny recordings, or are the tunes clear enough to blend?  Anyone know?

Brian Newman

I've actually got a rather complex playlists for Dogs for when (hopefully) I run it soon.  I'm not much into country or bluegrass, and I don't find it all that evocative of Dogs for me.  Rather, I've got a lot of music that sets the mood I'm after -- the "snowy mountains framed by lynching trees" kind of mood.  I still took some recommendations from this thread and used quite a bit of it to guide me.

16 Horsepower - Silver Saddle, Praying Arm Lane, Just Like Birds
Johnny Cash - Hurt, One
k.d. lang - After the Gold Rush, Trail of Broken Hearts, Calling All Angels
Alice in Chains - Rotten Apple, I Stay Away
Andy Partridge & Harold Budd - Western Island of Apples, Anima Mundi, Well for the Sweat of the Moon, Tenochtitlan's Numberless Bridges
Anne Dudley - The Holly and the Ivy
Big Country - The Storm
Brendan Perry - Saturday's Child, Death Will Be My Bride, Archangel
Chris Isaak - Kings of the Highway
Clannad - Wilderness
David Bowie - Art Decade, Weeping Wall
Dead Can Dance - Mephisto, Indus, Song of the Nile, The Host of Seraphim, Windfall
Electric Light Orchestra - Wild West Hero
Enya - Tempus Vernum, Book of Days, Pax Deorum, Cursum Perficio
Hooters - All You Zombies
Love and Rockets - Coyote
Maire Brennan - The Mighty One
REM - Drive, Find the River, The Wrong Child, Endgame
Simon & Garfunkel - El Condor Pasa
Sting - St. Agnes and the Burning Train
This Mortal Coil - Ivy and Neet, Meniscus
Wall of Voodoo - They Don't Want Me, Ring of Fire

and tracks from these soundtracks:
Cold Mountain - You Will Be My Ain True Love, Anthem
Unforgiven - Claudia's Theme
For a Few Dollars More - Theme
High Plains Drifter - Theme
The Magnificent Seven - Theme
A Fistful of Dollars - Theme
Once Upon a Time in the West - Theme
Good/Bad/Ugly - Theme
Silverado - Theme
The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath - City of Dreams, Boneyard Fear
Spirited Away - A Road to Somewhere
A Thousand Roads - Good Morning Indian Country, Canyons of Manhattan, Coming to Barrow, All Your Relatives, Walk in Beauty's Way, A Healer's Life, Who Are We to Say
The Straight Story - Rose's Theme, Laurens Walking, Sprinkler, Alvin's Theme, Country Waltz, Country Theme, Nostalgia
City of Angels - Uninvited, Iris, I Grieve, The Unfeeling Kiss, City of Angels
Kill Bill - Bang Bang, The Grand Duel
Birdy - At Night, Floating Dogs, Quiet and Alone
Rain Man - Leaving Wallbrook on the Road
Uru (video game) - Beyond Gira, Out of the Hive, Badlands, Air Stream, The Well

If there's some of this that you don't know, email me and I can send you samples.


Brian, how did your music work for you?  I noticed it's pretty eclectic.  Did it go over well, or did you have your players glance back at the stereo with bemused looks once in a while?

One thing I started doing quite a while back (when I started running White Wolf games prior to second edition, as a matter of fact) was dividing my music between Background and Occasional music.  Background is innocuous; it can run constantly without disrupting play, but it fills up that awkward silence and sets a tone.  Occasional is music intended to be foregrounded, usually to set a scene or announce a shift of some sort.  When the players enter the darkened barn and I play something from "Hellraiser," that's Occasional.  (Or, as recently, when I played Esthero's "Wikked Lil' Grrrls" as my players faced off against three under-age witches; I use so little modern music for Dogs that when I do, it stands out like a facial cicatrice.)

My problem with DitV during my first couple sessions was that I tried to build a Fight Background CD using only bluegrass tunes.  Naturally, I included "Foggy Mountain Breakdown," "Orange Blossom Special," "Shuckin' the Corn," and some quick-tempo Ricky Skaggs pieces.  It ended up sounding like there should have been a Keystone Cops chase scene, probably involving Benny Hill and Daisy Duke in fast-motion, running around a tree or something.

I found about two-thirds of the way through my second session that slower, more mournful pieces work just as well for DitV gunfights as for "discovery" scenes, so I loaded up on those for the third session; actually, the slower music imparts a macabre feel to a gunfight that fits perfectly with the way I want my DitV game to "look."  I still stick with hand-picked pieces for "establishing shots," though.