Outlander, the epic new series from Ronald D. Moore based on Diana Gabaldon’s epic novels, is a project that combines many of my passions. I get to score a sweeping narrative, collaborate with world-class musicians, and integrate the Scottish instrumentation and folk music I’ve adored my whole life. (I have already written a whole blog entry about my experiences with Scottish music, and its impact on my life). In the coming weeks I will write about my creative process scoring each episode of this incredible series. For those new to my blog, I tend to get into pretty intense musical detail regarding themes, composition, orchestration, performance and history. I hope that this blog can be a resource as you journey through the series, highlighting the musical threads that guide the story.
SPOILERS AHEAD: For the uninitiated, Outlander follows Claire, a WWII nurse who accidentally travels through time from 1945 to the highlands of Scotland in 1743. From the beginning, I wanted to draw predominantly from Scottish instrumentation and folk music. Instruments such as the fiddle, bagpipes, accordion, penny whistle, accordion and bodhrán (a type of frame drum) form the backbone of the score, supported by orchestral strings, haunting vocals and larger percussion. (more…)