[Bards] What is a bard?
silverhands at sbcglobal.net
Wed Oct 25 12:54:54 PDT 2006
On Oct 25, 2006, at 2:27 PM, Genie Barrett wrote:
> At 01:41 PM 10/25/2006, you wrote:
>> The definition that we came up with at the first KW Bardic College
>> (in 2000) when asked 'what the heck is bardic arts?' was:
>> "Bardic Arts is Song, Story or Poetics that is relevant to the
>> of the society" (note the small 's' in society;)
> Song... Or should it be Music?
> Why this choice of words?
A guess from left field: maybe because a "song" is sung, i.e. by a
performer using their mouth as an instrument. "Music" can be produced
using a variety of instruments other than the performer's mouth, and
would open the door to instrumental musicians.
I think that the "traditional" (for certain values of $tradition)
idea of What A Bard Is, is a person (singular, not a troupe or
company) who performs songs, stories and poems (at least some of
which are original compositions, ideally). If there is an instrument
involved (such as a harp or lute), it is only there to enhance or
support the performance.
A bard might be accompanied by musicians (playing recorders,
percussion instruments, whatever), but they would not be considered
to be bards themselves -- again, according to that hypothetical
Speaking as an instrumental musician, I would rejoice if the Kingdom
Fellowship of Bards would include musicians under their tent. But
I also understand Robin's concern that it's a slippery slope; where
do you stop? If you call a sackbutter or percussionist (such as
myself) a bard, then what about dancers? Is theater (group
performance) bardcraft? Where do you stop? Or do you? Is it as simple
as Robin put it: "You're one of us if you choose to join us."?
 my personal suggestion for a name for our group. To me, "college"
connotes "school". I know that's not what the College of Heralds is
about, but regardless it was throwing me off in understanding what
Robin and Willow were trying to put forward. I think that
"fellowship" better fits what they described. At least, the way I
understood what they described. Your mileage may vary, etc.
 (singing) "sounds like butter, but it's not!"
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