Monday, January 9, 2012

How to Create a Demon with Music

by Shiela Stewart

Once and a while a song comes along that just captivates you. It can have a pull on you that is so strong that you can’t get it out of your head. You’ll hum it to yourself, tap the tune on your fingers, and curse it when it won’t stop playing in your mind. Music plays a big part in movies, television and in books. A complete story can be written from one simple line in a song. Or, the tune of a song can play a major part into creating a story.

What would a movie be like without music? Would Grease have been as successful without the music? Take the music out of Footloose and what do you have? A story about a rebel in a small town. Kevin Bacon wouldn’t encourage the kids to rebel against the law that states no rock music. He wouldn’t have the famous scene where he dances his frustrations away in the warehouse.  Dirty Dancing is another one.  Without the music, its nothing. Anyone who watches Glee watches it not just for the story and humour but the music. If that music wasn’t there it would be…well less entertaining.

Even non-musicals have killer music. Iron Man the movie has Ozzy Osborne song, Iron Man in it. I could go on forever, but you get the point. Music plays a big part in our lives.
Music has a big part in my creative process. I can’t have silence when I’m writing. I need music and mostly rocking dance style music. It has to have a good pumping beat to get me in the mood. That being said there was one book, or series rather, where music helped with the creation of my demons. I went through the vast supply of CD’s that I have looking for something to listen to while I wrote Awaken the Demon and nothing really caught my attention. I played a few and ended up giving up. During a shopping trip, I decided to pop into the music area and as I glanced through the Dance section, an album caught my eye. I picked it up and began reading the titles. None of the songs jumped out at me as being familiar yet something pulled at me to buy it. I tool it home, popped it in the CD player and sat down to write. From the very moment the music started I was enthralled. And my characters came to life. That album is M.C. Mario Mixdown 2002.

One particular song popped and before I knew it, the song became the Heroes theme.  O Fortuna By Nick Skitz. The origins of the song comes from a medieval Latin Golairdic poem written in the thirteenth century and is part of the collection known as the Carmina Burana.  It is a complaint about Fate, and Fortuna, a Goddess in Roman Mythology and a personification of luck. The poem was used in 1935/36 by German composer Carl Orff and set to music. Orff’s music became immensely popular and can be heard in several movies and television commercials and has become a staple in popular culture, setting the mood for dramatic or cataclysmic situations. Nick Spitz has taken this classic and blended it with a dance theme which has become very popular in the clubs across the world.  Of course, when I first picked out the album and listened to it for the first time I had no idea of its origins. But because of how captivating it was for me, I felt compelled to research the song. The things we learn. J
M.C. Mario’s Mixdown 2002 has become a staple for me when sitting to create the demon series. I listened to it while writing all three books, Awaken the Demon, Offer the Demon and the last, Conquer the Demon. Now, whenever I hear the music on the radio or on any digital music channel I instantly think of my Demon series.

Awaken the Demon available at Decadent Publishing:
Offer the Demon now available at Decadent Publishing:
Music courtesy of M.C. Mario Mixdown 2002.


Barbara Elsborg said...

Wish I could write with music in the background but even someone talking distracts me! But very interesting to read how much this music means to you!

Shiela Stewart said...

Thanks for stoppin in Barbara!

I've always been a music person. I sleep better with ligh music playing, I always have music going when I clean my house and especially when writing.