“As Performed by Richard Armitage and the Dwarf Cast”

The Hobbit soundtrack is due out December 11th. Will Richard Armitage’s voice be featured? Absolutely. Fandango has an exclusive on the tracklist. But even if Richard Armitage wasn’t a featured artist on this CD, I would still buy it. I adore the music from The Lord of the Rings. Its haunting, majestic quality with a little quirk thrown in is fitting for work inspired by Tolkien.

Two of my favorites, Riders of Rohan and Samwise the Brave (respectively) from Two Towers:

And in case you have been in a hole in the ground :D, an excerpt of the song Richard and Cast will be singing:

A hearty thanks to TheOneRingnet for posting a pointer to the Fandango article. I really, really appreciate all that they do. Perhaps when Ali gets a chance, she can put up a link on her site to the Amazon pre-order page, so that charity can benefit from what you purchase.

Barney Stubble

Perhaps I’ve threatened to quit blogging one too many times. Let me assure those who sent me notes. I’m not quitting. I’ve just been busy and had toons on my mind lately. Blame it on the notion of Comic-Con which has me boning up on all things that make fanboys lose sleep. Of course after yesterday, I may blog about Richard Armitage for another five years. No, even I couldn’t talk about him that much.

Then I see something like this:

and chuckle at the thoughts which fly through my head. There wasn’t an urge to number the stubble but rather name the ones under his chin who have lived with him and seen all manner of things. Oh my Barney has gotten an eyeful, and what oh what has Barney endured? There’s a story. :D

Some of you are thinking, “Barney is not an elegant enough name for Richard’s stubble,” and maybe you’re right, but such is the pitfall of having Comic-Con as a filter for the next few weeks and for which RA is responsible.

And with all this talk of defection in recent weeks, I have a confession. I have become a Tolkien fan, which was not in my plans. Quite awhile back I started reading The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings for the second time. My first reading was at the ages of 14 and 15 and read in part because my guy friends were all reading them, and I wanted to know what was so intriguing. Their discussions also made it obvious my education was not as well-rounded as it should have been. So mostly my curiosity and pride were at work as the impetus, and any satisfaction was clinical. This time around I was just reading for enjoyment, for the wonder of it. And obviously I did enjoy them, but in the middle of all that reading, I began partaking of Tolkien’s essays and letters and fell in love with him.

Yeah, there he is. Can you see my grin?

In particular the ability and encouragement to fantasize in a way that’s edifying makes him irresistible. And that is the point isn’t it? To be edified. That may sound odd coming from the author of a blog like this one (or maybe not), but there has been something edifying about the process here. Oh, sometimes it gets boring. Yes, there it is. Sometimes I get bored with all of this. How many times can you look at the same photo of someone?

But what I’ve been trying to say in my diary entries is how I’ve become utterly obsessed with what words can do and how I came to give myself permission to explore that. As a reader, I’ve always adored others’ abilities to handle words, but I never thought to articulate the wild thoughts in my head. I was a geek and a musician who loved to spend countless hours solving a problem or playing with notes. Playing with the phrasing in a musical piece. But to do something similar with words? No, I could never do that. It was left for the few who mysteriously had some sort of gift. My imagination would have to remain locked up and privy only to me. I was good in math and had better pursue it or something related to it since I didn’t have the “gift.”

If I get the courage worked up enough, I’ll continue the entries. Mostly, I have to forget that you’re all here. It’s only when I post as musing to myself that I can really proceed. Thankfully, I realized before I started this blog that it doesn’t matter if what I say here is perfectly lucid or smacks of great ability. It’s something and better than nothing, and most important that I’ve let myself go to a much freer place. Tolkien is a balm in this respect. I plan to take out his words and review them when I’m feeling the infection of performance mentality, and I love this quote no matter how incessantly it’s been used nor how hackneyed it’s become to some of you. It aptly sums up my presence here:

“…Not all those who wander are lost…” — PPS in a letter from Gandalf to Frodo, Fellowship of the Ring

Thank God for post scripts.

About now you might be thinking, “This blog is your wild thoughts?” No, but it has helped to keep me thinking what happens when you communicate with others in written form. My wandering here has helped me get through writing a book, and if someone had told me a few years ago that I would write a book other than a technical how-to, I would have laughed hysterically. And now I’m halfway through a novel.

But all of this is a preface to a question, really.

Can I have two infatuations? :D