Flamebringer Music

In The Dragonslayer of Brin, Zhen refers to several types of music:


Riverfolk tend to play in 5-tone, which we know as the pentatonic. If you want to hear how this sounds on your piano, just play the black keys.


The song about the nine elements is in 9-tone. In the Olden Time, 9-tone was probably played with 9 equal notes and would have sounded even weirder than what Zhen thinks of as 9-tone.

To play 9-tone on the piano, use all the white keys plus B-flat and E-flat. My research suggests that this might be known as C Raga Ramdasi Malhar.

Normal Music

Because these two are unusual to Zhen, there must be something else that sounds normal. This is probably the 7-note scales that we are used to in Western musical tradition. (I know, we play eight-note scales, but note number 8 is one octave above note number 1, so they are kind of the same note. We only use 7 letter names: A, B, C, D, E, F, and G.)

Zhen’s people distinguish between major and minor modes, and they probably recognize all the other modes as well.


I’m hoping someone will invent blues scales in Edgewhen. I don’t think they are recognized in 1002.


Flamebringers play flutes, lutes, or drums. Everyone knows how to sing.


Because Lashrefi’s dominant elements include Air and Motion, Lashrefi’s people tend to be talented at manipulating sound. A skilled kalaibo can control the sounds of the entire band, raising the volume of some instruments and quieting others to achieve better balance.

Individual performers can use magic to modulate their instruments’ sounds. I’m not saying you should expect rock-guitar distortion or wa-wa pedal effects. Their special effects will still sound like acoustic instruments … just really weird acoustic instruments.