“If you have to ask what jazz is, you’ll never know.”
To further disassociate music and Friday from the song “Friday”, TWRM Radio is here to save the day with some actually good music! Good music in games, you ask, layman? Well, yes. We’ve batted around the idea here before that games have historically been looked down on by the mainstream and general non-gaming audiences, but one way to remedy that is in sharing some of the exceptional, high quality musical craftsmanship that exists within video games. Heck, my pop still thought video games were just bleeps and bloops.
Games have come a long way from the archaic arcades of the 80s. Tinny jangles and warbling chiptunes, rapid series of beeps signifying high scores being racked up gave way to musical earnestness, robustness, and maturity. Here we are some decades later with video game soundtracks that use real instruments and sound as good as cinema, covering every genre imaginable (I suppose, though I haven’t checked). Music and sound design are a large part of the beauty of video games.
Within music itself, you probably have your favorite circles, scenes, and performers. For myself, it doesn’t get any better than classical music, a triumph of human achievement. However, there’s also jazz and jazz is great. Jazz is so great in fact that I’d say it’s the classical music of non-classical music!
So while it’s not really classical (nothing besides classical really is), we decided to put together a TWRM Radio mix of some zippity-bippity-bopadoowoppin’ hoppin’ jazz for your enjoyment. There is of course a lot of jazz subgenres, from acid to funk, from Dixieland to contemporary, smooth to Latin, bossa nova to bebop, free form to swing. One of my favorites is ragtime. The nuances of emotion below the cheerfulness are fascinating to me and ragtime is exhilarating to play. You can be absolutely sure that there’s going to be a TWRM Radio ragtime mix coming soon!
With this mix, we aimed for jazz music by big band ensembles. I love big band, the energy of the sound and the performance. That’s why I picked the title “Ebullience” for this mix. That also helped us distinguish some tracks from the more noire, smooth, or ragged pieces of music out there. Not all of this will fall into the big band flavor, but I tried to keep the theme of this mix as clear as possible.
This mix is important too because it also marks ABXY Reviews joining our team as the ABXY Mage (debut review coming soon). Special thanks to him for proposing this theme and to everyone who helped contribute songs! I was able to hear a lot of music I hadn’t before, expand my horizons and deepen my appreciation for music, period, not just in games.
Next week’s theme is going to be… “Dungeon” as proposed by the Badly Backlogged Mage (aka Mr. Backlog)!
If you can think of any great dungeon themes, dark and brooding and scary, share them with us! Who knows, maybe some of your favorite music will end up in next week’s TWRM Radio mix. Thanks!
Play it with feeling,
-The Well-Red Mage
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