What instrument is good for beginners

Hi, im new to larping, so i thought i would hop onto here to see if you lot can answer my query. I like the idea of my character having an instrument to play at times, since she is the type of person to join in on the fun, but i do not know how to play any instruments - i can learn, i played a few songs on a friends Ukulele once.

But I’m not sure what instruments would be suited to Empire, so can you give me any ideas? I’ll be playing a Marcher, if that helps in anyway.

Thank you for all your help, stay safe and have a nice day :blush:

Voice.

Literally, best, cheapest, fastest instrument to learn. Doesn’t cost you anything extra, will always be on you, and if you’ve got a solid sense of pitch can get you places.

Other than that, I’d advise against woodwinds (flutes, recorders, fifes, etc), as they may look easy, but are not wet field friendly in the slightest. They’re also a right pain in the rear to learn quickly, if you’ve no previous experience with playing an instrument, and are very easily broken.

(NB, I play flute and attendant family instruments. It took me about two years to get to the point where I was classed as minimally proficient and not painful to listen to.)

Whatever looks and sounds appropriate :slight_smile:

I’ve seen drums, tambourines, bells, lutes, and I suspect there’s someone with a harp about… Also a couple of fiddles and guitars.

Nothing too complex like a trumpet, but horns are fine.

Classicly for the Marchers, I’d suggest tambourine. I play in Dawn, and bang rhythmically on a djembe drum occasionally.

The League had a battle orchestra once… with accordian… ah, but that’s another story…

…Is the battle orchestra one of those situations where nodding and smiling would be an appropriate response?

(Also, if anyone can march/walk/move at anything other than a zombie shuffle with an accordion, I am impressed…

…however, I did US style marching band for a year or so, so understand that movement and instruments can mix)

As I understand it:

The League, at one point, had a ritual coven that did their rituals via musical performance. So you had, say, an accordianist, drummer, lutanist, horn player and singer doing a song and getting a magical effect.

So they are persuaded to take the battlefield.
General: What result from the divination ritual?
Singer: Enemy force A is over there, strength X. Enemy force B is over there, strength Y. Enemy force C (strength Z) is moving from there to way over there, and has your objective with them.
General: Wonderful! Fall in at the back, would you?
Singer: Uh, we’re not good in a fight, we were going to head back…
General: No, we can’t get you out through the portal until we’re done, get to the back of the lines and play something inspirational…
Singer: F…

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I recommend Voice, Tin Whistle, Drum, Guitar/Ukelele, in that order.

Ahoy fellow Noob! :grinning:

If you type any subject or keyword into the Empire official wiki it is a great starting point.

Here is the page all about Music which has popular songs, how music is used on the battlefield, bardic societies, and more.

https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Music

There is also a page for every nation about their styles of music.

Here is the one about the Marches

https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/The_Marches_music

So as well as listing 8 billion songs you can learn before the game it says:

“Songs are usually unaccompanied in the Marches, typically sung in raucous harmony rather than using instruments. However sometimes drums, accordions, guitars, fiddles, and whistles/recorders are used. For instrumental music, look to the very heavy rhythms of trad English music (the kind of tunes used to accompany morris dancing would be perfect).”

Hope that helps.

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I think a drum of some sort is probably the easiest thing to whack out a basic beat on. I’m planning to get a djembe for my next character because it has a good bassy sound from what I can tell, as well as a some other sounds depending on how you hit it, so once i’m used to it I’m thinking out I can tap out something a bit more interesting.

This would be my advice on where to start!

My next question would be: what do you usually play? That’s going to have a bearing on what you can attempt. Stick with an instrument you are familiar with if possible, even if you buy a cheap one to take on the field.

I’m a clarinettist in real life, so I do have a metal clarinet that I used when I played in Varushka as it is a classic Eastern European folk instrument that suited itself well to the brief. I don’t use it in Highguard because it doesn’t quite fit the style, instead I have concentrated on singing and trying to use the inspirations from the Wiki.

If you have never played an instrument before then a simple instrument like a recorder (I’d suggest a treble or tenor rather than a descant as the lower pitched the instrument the less piercing it can be) or an ocarina (again, as large as you can find within your budget). Both can be purchased in non-plastic materials or in a plastic that doesn’t look glaringly modern.

Small hand drums are a good addition anywhere. Clapping is good everywhere! If you can sing even a little bit, learn a song or two. There are some excellent singers on the field but most folks just want someone they can sing along with, and you just need to be confident. :slight_smile:

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Triangles are better.

…or cowbell.

(Tongue firmly in cheek. Ruddy big grin on face)

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