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The Grog and The Gryphon

by Bill Holloweg, with some music by the Brobdingnagian Bards

The Saga of the Grog and Gryphon tavern is a tale about the exploits of the characters who frequent the Grog and Gryphon tavern, located in the village of Hammerstoothe. Paul Mannering, a good friend of mine and a VA in tonight's production at Darker Projects Audio Productions (also home to wondrous tales of Horror and Sci-Fi), referred to it warmly as: “Cheers for the Dark Ages.”

That is as good a description as any, though this is not a comedic sitcom. It is a drama set in a mythic time of sword bearing heroes and magic of good and ill. There are elements which (hopefully) will bring a bit of mirth, but it is a drama in the tradition of Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings and Robert E. Howard’s Conan the Barbarian. Truth be told, I wrote this tale as if Robert E. Howard had been tasked to write a saga in his harsh Conan style, yet set the story in Tolkein’s middle earth. While I LOVE Tolkein, and Howard’s Conan tales have been favorites of mine for as long as I can remember, Tolkein’s LOTR tales were more of a mythology, while Howard’s were action/adventure; a wild west tale set against a harsh and unforgiving fantasy landscape. Being that I live in Texas, located only about two hours away from the hometown of Robert E. Howard (Cross Plains, Texas), this was a great starting point for a story.

I am a fan of Battlestar Galactica (new and old series), and I had in mind a saga that would have some similarities in style (hopefully) to the way that the New BSG is put together. In the new series (BSG) there are 2 main plots, 1-the Cylons attempting to exterminate the Galactica and her ragtag fleet of survivors, and 2- the myth of the earth (13th Colony) and the continued search for it by the Galactica for sanctuary and an ally to stop the Cylons. These are the backbone of the story, while over the top of this are a ton of plots/subplots between the characters, which makes for a very rich and intriguing story, as opposed to just blowing up Cylons week-in and week-out... It is a story about people, but set in a sci-fi landscape.

The Grog and Gryphon, as I mentioned earlier, is a story about a Tavern on the fringe of known civilization (the D’Annulshire forest being the start of the unknown realms and the spawning ground for the evil in the land) and the characters who frequent it. That is the underlying theme. But the story, if I have succeeded, is about the people, similar in scope to Galactica.... I enjoy the fact that to watch Galactica, you cannot miss an episode or you are lost because so much has happened. I am attempting to do this with the Grog and its seeming cast of thousands... Bear with me, they all serve a purpose and are all intertwined in one manner or another...

I send out my warmest thanks to all the talented people who have shared in this dream of mine! I would also like to thank from the bottom of my heart, Gareth and Andrew and all the incredible people at Westlake Films for allowing a guy living in West Texas to add his Audio Drama to their stellar collection of audio drama’s and films. I can’t say how indebted I am for your help!

The music...
The music for tonight’s tale was provided by: Peter Wicks of Westlake Films, check out his symphonic masterpieces here at the Westlake Films website. Other wondrous soundscapes were provided by: James Underburg, Devin Anderson, and Seraphic Panapoly-, all of whom I found at the Podsafe Audio website, if you haven’t visited, you are missing out!

Next I would like to thank the Renaissance Faire/Celtic bands that have graciously allowed me to use their incredible music in this production. The Renn Faire bands heard in tonight’s tale are as follows:

--The Brobdingnagian Bards, check out: The BARDS ROCK!
--Cantiga , check out: CANTIGA IS AWSOME!
--And Howl-O, Check them out at HOWL-O IS INCREDIBLE!


--posted by Marc Gunn of the Brobdingnagian Bards, Celtic Folk Music
  Thursday, November 02, 2006


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