Saturday, December 19, 2015

When in Gnome’s Unofficial Soundtrack

I wanted to share some of the songs that inspired me to write parts of the book, songs that, for me, represent characters, and songs that are actually referenced in the book.  This is by no means a complete list.  I call it unofficial because I don’t own any of these songs or have any rights to them.

Also, if you go to my Pinterest board, you’ll find the new WIG Soundtrack board with YouTube videos of all of the songs linked.  Because some of the songs are older, the videos with the hair styles and outfits are kind of funny now, but the music is still pretty awesome.  (

Where do I start?  First, here’s the list, and, following, I’ll explain why I chose the songs I did:

1.       Ellie Goulding “Lights”
2.       Soul Asylum “Promises Broken”
3.       Macy Gray “Sweet Baby”
4.       Ry Cooder “Down in Mississippi” (by J. B. Lenoir)
5.       Ry Cooder “Crossroads” (by Robert Johnson)
6.       Counting Crows “Rain King”
7.       Los Lonely Boys “Heaven”
8.       Peter Gabriel “Solsbury Hill”
9.       Fleetwood Mac “Big Love” (Live Acoustic Version)
10.   R.E.O. Speedwagon “Golden Country”
11.   Trapt “Headstrong”
12.   Bush “Machinehead”
13.   Queen “We Will Rock You”
14.   The Cure “Lovesong”
15.   Elvis “Suspicious Minds”
16.   Avenged Sevenfold “Bat Country”
17.   Wolfmother “Woman”


There were a few songs I thought of in terms of Evangeline’s character.  Some of them applied more to where the story is going, so, for this first book, the song “Lights” by Ellie Goulding seemed to fit.  The song is clearly feminine, like Evie, but seems to talk about this loss and a longing to feel safe.  I also chose “Promises Broken” by Soul Asylum because it represents how she feels about the loss of her friendship.  She also listens to Macy Gray (“Sweet Baby”) while she thinks about the moment that she and Paul just shared together.


Daniel is the caretaker at Rosewood, and he likes blues music and jazz.  I chose “Down in Mississippi” with the original lyrics written by J. B. Lenoir, who was born in Mississippi, and, in the version I used, sung by Ry Cooder, who was not.  The lyrics were later appended and recorded by Mavis Staples from Illinois, which is, ironically, the same state where Lenoir died. 

I also chose “Crossroads” written by Robert Johnson, who was also born in Mississippi.  Again, this is the Ry Cooder version.  The original is good, but this one has more bass, which I like.


I see Ben as liking music that has a bit more of a folk or country flavor.  In the first scene where he is alone with Evie, he’s singing “Rain King” by the Counting Crows because his last name is Crow and the crow is like a totem for him.  Later, he’s listening to “Heaven” by Los Lonely Boys in his truck, and then Evie learns that he plays acoustic guitar just for fun when he plays “Solsbury Hill”, which is a Peter Gabriel song.


Because Paul is so much into music, there is a lot of music that represents him.

After Paul meets Evie, he’s excited, and he’s listening to songs that make him happy, like the acoustic version of “Big Love” by Fleetwood Mac.  The songs have nice melodies and chords, but they aren’t the kind of song that he plays with his band.  To me, these feel like the kind of songs he would play if he were at home in his living room and unplugged.

When he and Evie go out, he has “Golden Country” by R.E.O. Speedwagon turned up loud in his car, and the live version is really the only version.  When he performs, the band does covers of songs like “Headstrong” by Trapt and “Machinehead” by Bush and ends every show with “We Will Rock You” by Queen.

When Paul and Evie meet later, they listen to songs like “Lovesong” by the Cure, and even dance to Elvis (“Suspicious Minds”).  I think it’s hard to talk about the landmarks and the people of the South and not, at some point, have Elvis come up.  Later, when Paul arrives in the parking lot with Mackenzie and Evie, “Bat Country” by Avenged Sevenfold came to mind.  There’s a quote in the song, “He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man,” which is actually from the 1700s by a man named Samuel Johnson.  But the song seems angry and frustrated, which, to me, seemed to sum up what he was feeling at the moment.


When Mackenzie corners Evie in the parking lot, there were a handful of songs I could have used—like “Mississippi Queen” would have been an obvious choice—but I chose “Woman” by Wolfmother because it seems frenzied and chaotic, but the lyrics contrast beautifully with what transpired. 

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