My regular readers have likely already noted how often I integrate a song, or reference a particular performer, in many of my works. The reasons for this are quite simple, centering on my personal interest and love of many forms of music, and a belief that music can become almost like another essential character within the creation of a scene, or story. A song brings back memories, sets a tone, and adds the sense of sound, to the telling of a tale.
In DOMINATUS, Mac Walker sings the Rolling Stones’ Wild Horses to the last gathering inside of the former Navy SEALS’ beloved Freedom Tavern. If any of you have witnessed a herd of such horses running across unfenced, open expanses, you would likely understand the symbolic connection between that image, and what the residents of Dominatus faced as deadly tyranny literally loomed above them.
In BENNINGTON P.I. “Take Two And Call Me In The Morgue”, the priest demands Bennington play Van Morrison’s Celtic New Year during a pivotal scene toward the end of the story. As I constructed that chapter, and already very familiar with both the song and the lyrics, I knew it would add just the right tone of melancholy defiance so essential to the character that is Father Victor Barnes: (Who also happens to make a younger-version appearance in the just released MAC WALKER’S 40,000 FEET)
If I don’t see you through the week
See you through the window
See you next time that we’re talking on the telephone
And if I don’t see you in that Indian summer
Then I want to see you further on up the road
And in my soon-to-be-released novel, THE IRISH COWBOY, music is again used to further develop both the characters, and the story, primarily in the form of Waylon Jennings’s Outlaw Shit, a song that is something of a time traveler between the main character’s past, present, and future, and a most fitting rendition for the much more complicated than initially appears Montana rancher, Hap Wilkes.
I have always believed music to be an essential part of what makes us human, and so, look forward to its continued use in my novels.