I was a little late for the opening of this concert, I apologise to the band. It took longer than usual to log in-game, by the time I had entered the auction hall the music was drifting out reaching an audience far beyond the walls of the hall.
At first it was a little difficult to see the band as I am only a small Hobbit, the room was crowded with bodies of varying sizes. I dodged and side stepped my way to the front of the crowd, and found a spot to view the entertainment as well as strutting my funky stuff.
The band was enormous! Two rows of players; Hobbits at the front and Big Folk behind. Nestled in the middle were two of Durins Folk.
What was puzzling was on either flank stood Hobbit-lasses attired in beautiful gowns, all in the same style but differing in colour. This night was to be a vision for the eye as well as the ears.
I counted twenty members in total: The biggest band in our Weatherstock V celebration. It is going to be an amazing feat if all twenty can get to Weathertop. Sadly I think they may have to leave the chorus line at the Prancing Pony.
A warm introduction was given by Floradine Strongfoot and room erupted in applause as they began their opening number “Eridor’s Meisterbarden Band”.
The band were real troopers and played on even though they were being trampled from time to time by patrons of the house.
How amazing was it to see the eight hobbit maidens, four either side of the band. All stepping to the beat in perfect synchronized formation! It was this second song that the power of this band could be heard. Such a big sound is their trademark, all those instruments really give a solid wall of warm musical energy that warms the soul.
The band played on and on and on….(42 songs they had prepared). They must have been eating extra mushroom pie before the event, as this concert lasted THREE HOURS! The music, some of which was quite familiar to the large audience just kept flowing, and the dancers kept dancing. It was amazing! What an experience! If you missed these guys then try to see them at Weatherstock or look them up on UTube.
Pineleaf has the entire Die Meisterbarden von Bree Concert recorded on his twitch channel, it is well worth listening too as the quality of the playing is superb and the dancing ladies enchanting.
They really had everyone off their feet with the penultimate song “Jump” everyone leapt for all they were worth for the entire duration.
I know the acoustics are brilliant in the Auction Hall but these guys could use a larger venue as space was limited dancers were treading on each others toes.
The loudest encore erupted after this energetic offering, which was followed by a very tender Lute and Flute number than soothed our weary feet and closed what was an extravaganza of an evening.
This was a night to remember!
Thankyou Die Meisterbarden von Bree for a very fine concert!
Details of the Band: Die Meisterbarden von Bree
Main Character (Band Leader): Arnhor
Kinship: Die Meisterbarden von Bree
Bands: Website (if any): www.meisterbarden.de
Another link some of our songs on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/results?searc…=Meisterbarden
What prompted you to start a band?
In fact, there was not really a special moment when we “started a band”.
As soon as we had discovered the LOTRO music system (and the glorious
“sync” play command, which – as we later recognized – was just introduced
shortly before), we started to experiment with ABC files shyly in the
garden of our kin house (so that no one could hear our errors), only
with 3 to 4 players at that time. Later on, after we had found and/or
arranged a bunch of songs of pretty good quality, we dared to perform
in public, mostly at random times and places in Bree. After some time,
we had some more-or-less well-known listeners who could just meet us
by chance and therefore started to ask questions like “what’s your name?”,
“do you perform regularly?” or “when and where is your next concert?”.
I guess this was the time (around Christmas 2008) when we “started our
band” – finding a name, and settling dates and places for our regular
concerts (see below).
How did you decide what to call the band?
Arnhor and Doralyn (Littedora@Landroval), the founders of the band, live
in Nuremberg in Real Life. There is a medieval opera by Richard Wagner,
called “Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg” (“The Mastersingers of Nuremberg”)
which inspired us to name our band “Die Meisterbarden von Bree” (“The
master bards of Bree”). Hence, we do not claim to be the “master bards”
of all LOTRO servers, it’s just a tribute to the great musical history
of our RL home town.
Do you compose or transcribe your own music? How about original music?
Let me answer this together: One of our band members is just starting
to compose a “Meisterbarden song”, but usually we are looking for
good MIDI files and arrange them for playing in LOTRO. While we’re
about it, let me stress, that arranging is not that easy as most people
think (“everyone can download and convert MIDI files, so what?”) –
this is the point where the hard work begins: If the file has too
many or too few tracks (8 to 12 is optimal), you have to double or
merge some tracks; maybe you have to transpose the tracks; then you
have to find the perfect instrument for each track, and last but
not least you may have to adjust the volume for some tracks. And
then you hear it again – and find it awful… and start all over
We did have songs on which we were working a week or even more
until they sounded “almost perfect”. Of course you can just download
MIDIs and produce ABCs by very few mouse clicks (and we do know
people who work that way), but we prefer quality over quantity.
What genre does your band like to play the most?
We are lucky enough that nearly all of our musicians contribute new
songs to the band. Of course, people mostly arrange songs which they
like themselves, so there is a wide variety of genres we’re playing:
Hits and oldies of the last 100 years, many Irish and Scottish
traditionals, classical music, movie themes…
So it’s not really a certain genre which we like most, but more the
“perfect arrangement” where all instruments sound harmoniously, have
the correct volume and all that – as if it was a song which could be
played in the radio as well and you couldn’t tell the difference 🙂
Do you regularly hold public concerts? And if so, when and where?
Yes, we perform every Friday night inside the Auction Hall of Bree
(Server Vanyar), from 20:00 to 22:00 Central European Time (2pm-4pm
Whenever technically possible, we broadcast our concerts live at
http://www.xfire.com/live_video/arnhor and you can watch past concerts
at http://www.twitch.tv/arnhor/videos if you are unable to visit our
Do you perform with a band outfit? If so, how did you decide what to wear?
Of course, a common band outfit is important. We are wearing the
same robe while playing (which we have chosen together); though
each band member was allowed to choose his or her own color.
In fact, we have a clothing officer who takes care about that 🙂
One of our traditions is that while playing our penultimate song
at every concert, which happens to be the well-known “He’s a Pirate”,
we put on the corsair outfit – and so does our audience as well!
What is your favorite part of performing music?
Closing the eyes and listening to a perfect 12-track tune. Re-opening
the eyes and watch the entire audience dancing synchronously. Getting
the cheers at the end of the song 🙂
If you could say one thing to encourage others to start playing music, what would it be?
“Don’t get discouraged!” Your first few tunes *will* sound awful –
except if you find any great ready-to-use ABC files on some server,
but arranging music by yourself (and later listening to your own
work) is way more fun and satisfying than just playing other
“I would also be interested in how the band grew so big”-Lilikate Buggins
Best I might explain this by a slightly modified quote from another
universe: “We are the Meisterbarden. You will be assimilated.
Resistance is futile.”
But seriously: Over the years, we repeatedly discovered some *very*
regular visitors of our concerts. Sometimes they played some nice
solos or duets after our concerts. Or they asked us to play some
“big” song (for 8-12 players) which they gave us because they
couldn’t perform it alone or in twos.
Getting acquainted with those people more and more, we invite them
to play some songs together with the band. If it turns out that they
are a good supplement, we invite them into the band. So the chain
often goes “accidental listener” -> “regular listener” -> “solo
after-show performer” -> “Meisterbarden guest” -> “Meisterbarden
Currently, we are 9 RL players who are playing each and every Friday
night (see above). Additionally, we play at weddings, rodeos, and other
events on several servers. It’s a great team, and it’s big fun playing
For “larger” songs (our largest one has 13 tracks), some of our members
have created one or two additional characters which they can also use
if another player should be prevented from attending a concert.
Who had the idea of the remarkable hobbit chorus line? How do they do that?
I think you’re talking about our incredible “Mr. Fidel” (Mystifax@Landroval).
We don’t exactly know how he does it, but all his little dancers live within
a single computer, and he uses some magical software to synchronize
them. They really increase the value of our concerts! In addition,
because he is such a gifted technician, he is our supplier of band-
related software, for example, one of our drums converters, or a
“ready checker” which provides a control panel showing players
already entered the “/play” command for the next song (and whether
they will play the correct song at all). A tool of great value!
If you want to know more about Fidel’s tricky gadgets, dial
1-800-… ehm, seriously, just talk to him in-game, and he’ll
be glad to help you!